Think Twice About Choosing a Fake Tree For Christmas

 In Conservation, Whitewater Blogged

You might not believe it, but that fake, plastic Christmas tree you bought with the best of intentions could be doing more harm to the environment than if you have chosen a real Christmas tree.

Choosing between a real or a fake Christmas tree in Colorado

Many artificial trees are made from toxic, harmful polyvinyl chloride.
Photo by Casteniel

Trees are our friends, and we need to protect them. Cutting down a tree so that we can decorate it with lights and colored balls might seem counter-intuitive. However, if you’re not careful, opting for a real tree is a lot better for the environment than buying a fake tree.

Artificial trees are often made of PVC and contain lead

The vast majority of faux trees on the market today are produced outside the US in regions that don’t have the same environmental protection laws or enforcement agencies as our homegrown trees. The fake trees that are so readily available today are often manufactured from the worst toxic chemical we know: polyvinyl chloride (PVC).

PVC is toxic for the environment and has been linked to many health risks including cancer. As if that isn’t enough, PVC is also filled with lead, which is damaging to your kidneys and liver. Remember the toxic spill in the Animas River? Lead was one of the major concerns during that catastrophe. Don’t let your Christmas tree be a part of the problem.

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You could also make a tree out of cinnamon sticks and avoid the whole dilemma.

So, even though you may be able to recycle a fake tree over and over, the manufacturing process is so toxic and harmful that it is not worth it.

Several new trees are planted for every tree sold at Christmas

Speaking of reusing and recycling your Christmas tree. Real trees are great for the environment, sucking up CO2, releasing O2, providing shelter and protection for birds and wildlife, as well as beautifying the Colorado landscape and making good use of land that won’t sustain other crops.

But, the best part of using a real three for Christmas, is that for every tree cut down for the season, several new shoots are planted in its place.

So get out there with the whole family and pick out the perfect tree, guilt free!

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