Ignoring repeated appeals from green groups to save paper by not sending out Christmas cards, church and charity organisations are gearing up for sales to raise funds. Meanwhile, Friends of the Earth is launching its annual campaign to ask the public to send 'e-cards' on the Internet instead of greetings cards. Edwin Lau Che-feng, Friends of the Earth assistant director, said: 'We definitely cannot stop all the groups promoting Christmas cards - we can only stop a certain portion of cards from being sold. There are many ways to raise money. They can think of other ways so as not to use up our resources.' However, churches are displaying banners and printing advertising pamphlets to encourage people to donate by buying cards. Kathy Tilby, director of the Community Advice Bureau that has co-ordinated the annual Charity Christmas Card Sale at St John's Cathedral, said many of their cards were made with recycled paper and provided critical income for charity groups. 'The charities are having trouble raising funds and they are selling the cards for good causes - there are charity children's homes, the mentally handicapped,' said Ms Tilby. This year many people are selling cards on recycled paper. The Society for the Relief of Disabled Children is selling cards to raise funds for the Duchess of Kent Children's Hospital, at Sandy Bay, while the Society for the Promotion of Hospice Care is appealing to donors to buy its recycled-paper greetings cards. Mr Lau said the group estimated it had stopped one million Christmas cards from being sent last year, adding that 17 trees had to be cut down to make one tonne of cards. He suggested organisations set up Web site companies, which people could visit and contribute money to without wasting natural resources. The Environmental Campaign Committee will also be encouraging card recycling and e-cards at its Environmental Protection Festival next month. Committee members are appointed by the Chief Executive. They come from green groups, the education sector, academic fields, industrial and business organisations, professional institutions and community service agencies. At this year's festival, the committee will have a booth demonstrating how people can send electronic greetings.