Real Or Fake? The Christmas Tree Question.
Many Wyomingites will be making the big decision soon about whether to buy a fake or real Christmas tree...or, maybe, cut their own from a local forest. There are merits for all options, but Bill Ulfelder at The Nature Conservancy says natural Christmas trees are best. He cites environmental benefits - because trees capture carbon pollution and provide animal habitat, and can be recycled at the end of the season. While fake trees can be used year-after-year, he says they have a limited lifespan.
"Folks use an artificial tree for about five or six years, so energy-intensive to produce, energy-intensive to ship, and then it just sits there in landfill and doesn't biodegrade."
Cutting your own tree just about guarantees that it's natural. Christmas tree permits are available for between eight and ten dollars from the BLM and Forest Service offices. Ulfelder says that Christmas tree farms are an option, too.
"My family and I, we’re always looking to make sure we get a local tree. The other thing that’s starting to happen is more and more organic Christmas trees - trees produced with no pesticides or herbicides, also better for the environment
Ulfelder adds that most artificial trees come from Asia, while most real trees are grown in the U-S. And another plus, real Christmas tree production is a one billion dollar industry - providing 100-thousand jobs around the country.