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THE 2014 GREENER GIVING GUIDE Bookmark and Share

If you’re sick of waiting in holiday traffic, battling mall-goers and seeing the spirit of giving hurt the planet — don’t despair. No matter how you shake the snowglobe, the holiday season has its tradeoffs — but there are ways to do good for the planet during the year-end rush. The Center for Biological Diversity offers our Greener Giving Guide every year to help you keep your commitment to endangered species and the wild alive and well throughout the glitzy, consumerist bonanza that comes in December. If you give one of our less-conventional gifts, your friends, coworkers and family will feel you’ve given them something important — and they’ll get to share in your dedication to the plants and animals of the world.

So stay home, fire up the kettle and check out our ideas for giving — whether you’re looking for a better way to stuff the stocking or you want a gift that doesn’t have to be shipped. Happier, greener holidays to you, from all of us at the Center.


1. Give the gift of helping endangered plants and animals . . .

. . . with a gift membership to the Center for Biological Diversity. Wondering what to get that person on your list who has everything? Have no idea what your environmentally savvy friend wants this year? Maybe you have a niece, cousin or classmate who talks about animals all the time. Give the gift that really does keep giving all year long: a gift membership. It includes a subscription to our action-packed membership newsletter, Endangered Earth; weekly opportunities to take action online; and special invitations to events. We’ll use your gift to a deserving friend, colleague or family member to win stronger protections for wild animals, plants and places around the globe.


2. Give a gift for the present — for a brighter future.

If you want to give one of the most meaningful gifts around, leave a legacy for our planet and the diverse life it supports by making a bequest to the Center. Ask your attorney or trusted financial advisor to help you find the best type of bequest for your situation, which may include naming the Center in your will or as a beneficiary in a retirement plan, IRA or charitable trust. Your planned gift will help ensure the continued effectiveness of the most effective species-focused conservation organization (the Center, of course!) in protecting animals, plants and wildlands for many years to come.


3. Promote conservation conversations by giving — and wearing — Center apparel.

hatHave a lot of holiday parties to go to? Let your clothes break the ice by wearing a Center for Biological Diversity shirt or hat made of organic cotton and boasting the Center's logo frog (to be found at our online store). The backs of the shirts (both long-sleeved and short) include a block-patterned list of many of the animals and plants that the Center has worked hard to protect, giving you plenty of conversation topics. Or buy these T-shirts as stocking stuffers to get both the young and old excited about saving species (if they’re not already, that is).


4. Books are always perfect.

Ah, books: Everyone loves receiving one (or should, at least).

Check out our bookshelf of favorites, including EcoBarons by Ed Humes, Rare by Joel Sartore or Countdown by Alan Weisman.

Or find any book in the store by searching for it with the search box shown here on the left — and 10 percent of almost any Powell’s purchase through our link will go to the Center!


5. Buy a wildlife photo to help save wildlife.

The Center is proud to announce a new collaboration with one of the world’s most important nature photographers, Joel Sartore. Like the Center, Joel is dedicated to telling the story of rare and vanishing species as well as the promise of protection offered by the Endangered Species Act. Friends of the Center can purchase any photo in his collection at a discount and the Center will receive 5 percent or more of each purchase. The photos make great gifts, either for yourself or someone you know. Find out more here or go directly to purchase a photo, but make sure to enter the special code: CBD5, CBD7 or CBD10.


6. Help erase extinction with style.

We bet no one on your list has one of Kikkerland’s endangered species erasers — colorful, oversized erasers realistically shaped like rhinosgorillas, polar bears, bulls and the always-popular T. rex. Every time your loved one erases a mistake on paper, they’ll be reminded of one mega-mistake we’re all working to correct: the extinction crisis. Order these erasers today and the Center will get part of the proceeds.


7. Stuff a stocking with a mini-species.

If you’re looking for a stocking stuffer that’s fun, cute, educational and motivational (plus biologically friendly), you can’t beat the “Milkdot Bandits” keychains: tiny, plush masked animals perfect for clipping to the backpack or keychain of any kid (or kid at heart) interested in saving endangered species. Each keychain resembles a different animal and “shares its own tale in hopes of heightening awareness of the plight that faces many endangered animals today.” And 5 percent of their purchase price goes to the Center.



Necklace8. Why not give some “killer” jewelry this year?

Any vampire fans on your list? The “Care a Little More” necklace was designed out of love and respect for nature by talented True Blood star Kristin Bauer van Straten (who plays the character called Pam De Beaufort). A portion of sales goes to support the Center for Biological Diversity, and the necklace is also eco-conscious, made with recycled silver and bronze here in the United States. Buy one for yourself or for someone dear. 



9. Soothe your lips while supporting wildlife.
What do chapped lips have to do with saving polar bears, pikas, jaguars, green sturgeon and other imperiled species? When you stuff someone’s stocking with an Endangered Wildlife Lip Balm, 25 percent of the balm’s cost will go straight to Center programs to save those very species — which are charmingly depicted on the tubes, to help start up a the species-saving conversation. And besides tasting and smelling yummy with flavors like vanilla, lavender orange and spearmint, this lip balm is 100 percent organic, handcrafted and cruelty-free. It’s the perfect species-friendly gift for the winter season.


10. Go green and save some green.

The holidays don’t have to just be about spending money. By leasing solar panels with Sungevity, you can save money on your current electricity bill, at the same time reducing your carbon footprint and supporting the Center for Biological Diversity. Get more information and request a free solar-panel “iQuote.” Sungevity will give you a $750 credit off your solar lease, and once your panels are installed, will also donate $750 to the Center. Get panels for your own home or for a green homeowner on your list.


11. This year ask for donations instead of presents.

If you don’t want to add to the present-buying frenzy, have your holiday or birthday make a lasting, positive impact on saving endangered species instead of getting conventional gifts. Ask your friends to donate what they would have spent on a gift to your favorite cause using Causes.com. You can use Facebook and Twitter to help spread the word. Click here to get started.  


Do you have an idea for going greener this holiday season? Or are you helping support the Center through your work or business? Send us your thoughts at membership@biologicaldiversity.org.

Check back regularly, as we’ll be updating this guide until the end of the year.


Photo by Bryant Austin, California Fish and Game