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Watt's Happening

Looking for eco-friendly gifts for those on your list? Start here.

Hi all, I’m Andre, a member of FPL’s Watt’s Happening panel, and this month I’d like to share some ideas for how you can go green this Black Friday. The holiday season is upon us, which means for many of us, it’s time to start thinking about gift shopping for our nearest and dearest. As you peruse the aisles—or click “add to cart”—this Black Friday, why not choose items that will not only make the recipient smile, but also help them go green while they save some green? As you choose between everything from stocking stuffers to blockbuster surprises, here are a few ecofriendly and money-saving gifts to consider.

For the adventurer

For the person in your life who loves spending time outside and connecting with nature:

  • Portable Solar Power Bank: These power banks, many of which are made for the outdoors and are waterproof, can keep you phone, tablet and more running on solar power, so there’s no need to worry about a dead battery while hiking a trail with no outlet access.
  • Hand crank flashlight: No plug? No battery? No problem! A hand crank flashlight is the perfect stocking stuffer for the outdoorsy person in your life.

For the homebody

Some people are more comfortable staying home and social distancing, tucked in a cozy blanket with their favorite holiday drink beside them. Here are a few gift ideas for your friends and family members who prefer to stay home:

  • Pressure cooker: Churn out delicious homecooked meals using up to 70 percent less energy with a pressure cooker. Plus, it won’t heat up your kitchen and home nearly as much as your oven or stove top, meaning the A/C won’t have to work so hard to keep you cool!
  • Smart thermostat: A smart thermostat not only controls the temperature of your home, but it can also learn from your habits and self-program to help save you energy and cut down on your energy bill! For every degree you raise the temperature, you can save about 5% on your monthly cooling costs.

For the couch coach

Whether it’s quarterbacking from the armchair or pretending to shoot that three-pointer from the kitchen, here are some gift ideas for the biggest sports fans in your life:

  • LED television: Watch the game at home in style with a new LED television that not only makes them feel like they’re in the stands, but will also save them energy (and money!) compared to other TVs. LED flat screen TVs consume the least amount of energy, even less than LCD screens of the same size.
  • ENERGY STAR® wireless speakers or sound bar: They can tune into their favorite sports radio station and hear the games getting called all afternoon…and save energy while cheering along with an ENERGY STAR® certified speaker. Always look for the ENERGY STAR® label to save more.

For the children

Last but not least, gifts for the kids. While they may not be paying the energy bill, their toys can still contribute to the cost, so thinking green for children’s gifts can double as a present for parents as well.

  • An overlooked option when considering eco-friendly children’s gift, are those that use no energy at all! Consider options like stuffed animals, board games, and even science kits to keep them entertained without running up their home’s energy bill.
  • Solar Rover Kit: All you need to add to this kit is an empty soda can to create your very own solar rover. A gift like this will teach kids not only about solar energy, but also about the importance of recycling.

This holiday season, why not give a gift that supports our environment? There are so many eco-friendly options out there that will delight the recipient while also helping them save money on their energy bill. No matter who you’re shopping for this Black Friday, there’s an energy efficient gift out there that’s a perfect fit. I hope this gift guide helps spark some bright ideas!