December 2019

Consumer Edge

Office of Consumer Affairs

December 2019

How to be a green gift giver

Finding the perfect gift, while also trying to be eco-friendly, can be easy if you know how. Here are some ideas:

  • Give an experience: things like giving concert tickets, going to a nice restaurant, or doing a fun activity can create memories for a lifetime
  • Give to charity: for the person who has everything, make a donation in their name to a cause close to their heart
  • Give an education: nourish interests by paying for lessons or sending them educational apps
  • Buy gently used or refurbished: you can find high-quality used products (like clothes, toys, books and electronics) at a discount price
  • Buy quality: if you do buy new, try to buy well-made products that will last and meet their needs long term
  • Support eco-conscious brands: consider buying products from manufacturers that have take-back programs or design their products to be recyclable

Learn more about how you can prevent pollution. Search the Pollution prevention resource finder to find other online resources to help you make more environmentally friendly buying choices.

Holiday charity scams

Donating to a charitable organization, in lieu of a gift, is a great way to celebrate a loved one and make an impact for good.

Be aware of charity scams. Some bad actors may prey on your generosity and trick you into donating to fake charities. View this short clip from the Competition Bureau to learn how to spot potential charity scams.

And if you're making a donation to a Canadian charity, check the Canada Revenue Agency's list of charities to make sure it's registered.

Trading in your unwanted device

Have a new smart watch or tablet on your wish list? If so, don't be too quick to throw away your old device.

When you're ready to trade your Internet-connected device in for a newer model, your privacy and security should be your top priorities. Check the user manual (or manufacturer's website) for instructions on how to remove data from your device and revert to factory default settings. Our resource on e-waste can help with the responsible disposal of your unwanted devices.

For more tips on Internet-connected devices, check out our Internet of Things Checklist for Consumers.

ENERGY STAR holiday lights

Energy-efficient ENERGY STAR certified LED (light emitting diode) holiday lights use [blank] percent less energy, on average, than conventional incandescent light strings.

Sorry! You have answered incorrectly.

The answer is d) 75%. ENERGY STAR certified LED holiday lights use 75% less energy than conventional incandescent light strings.

Congratulations! You chose the right answer.

The answer is d) 75%. ENERGY STAR certified LED holiday lights use 75% less energy than conventional incandescent light strings.

Save money and reduce your carbon footprint by using ENERGY STAR certified LED decorative light strings to add holiday cheer to your home. Use ENERGY STAR Product Finder tool to find and compare certified decorative light strings.

Happy Holidays and best wishes for the New Year!