UCSF Sustainability Stories

Sophia Labeko, October 2020

6 Ways to Be Green on Halloween

Halloween, the scariest day of the year. When witches, monsters, and goblins resurface in the form of plastic and other single-use material. These elaborate decorations and costumes are a fun way to celebrate and get in the holiday spirit. However, after October 31st, most of these trinkets and accessories go to the landfill where they haunt our earth for tens or even hundreds of years.

Some Halloween activities might be canceled this year but fear not! Spice up your Halloween and start new traditions by thinking green. Check out these six tips for greening Halloween and don’t miss out on our costume contest!

Ways to Green Your Halloween

  1. Eat and compost the pumpkins you carve. Eating them reduces waste while composting them ensures proper disposal. According to US Department of Energy, in 2014 an estimated 1.3 billion pounds of pumpkin was trashed. Here are some recipes and creative ideas for pumpkins after Halloween.
  2. Buy Halloween treats that are locally-made and packaged with recycled material. Check their ingredients for any artificial flavors or food coloring.
  3. Repurpose household items as trick-or-treat bags, such as a bucket or pillowcase.
  4. DIY costumes and decorations. It’s easy, fun, and good for the environment.
  5. Reuse your decorations and costumes to avoid buying new ones.
  6. Shop at thrift stores for costumes and decorations.

Ready for more? Enter our Green Halloween Instagram Costume Contest. Five winners will receive gift cards.