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Online gift cards: a greener way to give

I typically equate gift giving with selfless--not selfish--ness, but made me realize maybe we can all be more conscious of how we package our generosity. This site has linked up with hundreds of vendors (including, featuring gluten-free gourmet mixes, baked goods, pastas, and more) to provide online gift cards that are just a click away. It's unbelievably easy and free. But the biggest perk is that it reduces the environmental impact of plastic card production, and if you think about it, these plastic cards are the gifts that keep giving--rather, the gifts that keep taking. The plastic production depletes valuable resources and emits gas. Beyond that, the cards are "packaged, shipped, stored, likely reshipped, restored, displayed, sold, and then possibly wrapped, packaged, and shipped again." Plus, they can be made from Polyvinyl Chloride (PVC), which contains dangerous chemical additives including phthalates, lead, cadmium, and/or organotins. All that for one use. It seems these online alternatives are worth more than any plastic in your wallet.

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