When my sister got married this past June, it made me think about making green decisions at your wedding. Low and behold; there are TONS of websites dedicated just to the idea of making a wedding a little bit greener. These sites kept stating the same 3 reasons to go green at a wedding in the first place. First, there are environmental benefits. Did you know that an average wedding in America produces an average of 62 tons of carbon dioxide and 400-600 pounds of garbage? That’s crazy! Secondly, there are social benefits to having a green wedding. The wedding industry is a multi-billion dollar industry – imagine the difference it could make if couples were supporting green, local, and environmentally friendly businesses. Lastly, there are economic benefits to have a green wedding. Since many eco-friendly decisions also save you money, making green decisions can be beneficial to your wallet as well. Here are some tips that I found the most helpful and interesting:
- Location. Getting married outdoors cuts down on water and electricity. Also, holding your ceremony and reception at one venue is great because no one will have to travel to get from one event to the next.
- Food. You can always ask your venue’s caterers and bakers if they can do your event organically and locally. Try to opt for dishes that incorporate foods that are in season, and make sure that your food is served on real glassware, dishware, and linens to ensure no extra waste. You can also make arrangements to donate leftover food to a local food bank or homeless shelter.
- Favors. Despite the time and money spent on a favor, many guests end up throwing them away. You can ditch the idea of favors all together and make a donation to your favorite charity in honor of your guests. Or, edible favors are a great idea to insure that they won’t be ending up in a landfill anytime soon. Even some seedlings or a small plant is a great way to thank your guests from coming while still staying green.
These tips can apply to other events than weddings. Any sort of event or celebration, such as graduation parties, showers, and work parties. Comment below with any ideas you have for making a wedding or another large event green!
Written by Lauren Henry, class of 2014