Halloween week is already here, and whether people plan on carving pumpkins or go trick or treating, the waste sector is gearing up for its own modern-day horror story.
Total spending for Halloween is expected to reach $9 billion this year. Celebrants are planning to spend an average of $86.79, up from last year’s $86.13, with more than 175 million Americans planning to partake in Halloween festivities.
“It truly is a Halloween horror to see the amount of costumes that are only worn once before ending in landfills, when it’s so easy to save used costumes from a nasty end and pass them on to friends and family,” Hubbub’s co-founder Heather Poore said.
But pumpkin waste is an even greater issue. The Energy Department reported that 1.3 billion pounds of pumpkin is produced in the States each year, most of which ends up in the more than 254 million tons of municipal solid waste produced in the US annually.
As this waste breaks down, methane is released which has a global warming impact 20 times higher than carbon dioxide. Carving enthusiasts have been urged to find other uses for their art, either through food or composting.
A great way to save money while helping the environment is to pay attention and actively reduce the waste we produce.
Tips to reduce Halloween waste:
- Reuse your Halloween costumes, share with friends the older ones, swap them or rent them. Most of Halloween costumes are made of polyester which doesn't biodegrade, this is an enormous source of pollution.
- Single plastic use is a big problem for the environment, all of Halloween candies are wrapped as singles to give around. Try buying bulk, create your own candy pouches with recycled paper bags. Also try other alternatives like Halloween themed pencils, even a quarter would be fun for kids to get and thats about what a candy would cost you anyways.
- Cook your pumpkin after carving it, the fruit is delicious and there are so many recipes you can use depending on what you like the most.
Have a safe and happy Halloween!