The ever-growing concern about the environment and climate change, has accelerated demand for conscious consumerism and sustainable initiatives. More people are choosing to reduce their carbon footprint and support brands that are committed to the cause of sustainability. This desire to invest in green projects has also trickled down to the events and wedding industry.
Planning a sustainable event/wedding is easier than you may think. If you’re eco-conscious and want to reduce your event’s effect on the environment, here are some small changes you can make that will have such a huge impact:
· Go Outside
What better way to be one with nature on your wedding day than an outdoor wedding?!
The sound of birds chirping, the sun shining (if you’re lucky), forests, botanical gardens, and other picturesque surroundings. You’ll also save on your energy usage by cutting down on the amount of lighting you’ll need and the natural light will result in beautiful photographs.
On top of that, you won’t need to fish out on as much decor as there will be very little alterations needed for both the ceremony and reception, because the beauty of the outdoors will be enough.
· Go Paperless
As you are aware, going paperless helps to reduce C02 (carbon dioxide) emissions. Digital technology means that events no longer need to generate reams of printed material; however if you’re not quite ready to part ways with the paper form here are a few companies that use eco-friendly paper:
Paper Culture offers 100% post-recycled paper invites, and they plant a tree in your honor with every purchase.
Botanical Paperworks prints their invites on seed-infused paper that you can plant and turn into flowers.
Paperchain offer beautiful eco-friendly invitations that make invitations from carbon neutral bamboo card.
· Minimise Food Wastage
Food wasted in enormous amounts is sent to landfills, which releases greenhouse gases like methane and is a direct cause of global warming, and historically food has been one of the most wasteful elements of a wedding. A study from Sainsbury’s reveals that on average:
£488 is wasted on food at every wedding
15% of people would only eat one or two of their three courses
15% of newlyweds would throw the remains of their cake away
37% of guests don’t eat edible wedding favours
Plan the menu according to the number of attendees estimated to attend, this is pretty easy for hosted events. If you do over cater at your wedding, think about donating it rather than binning it. Those of you using a professional venue or caterer could get in touch and ask what they usually do with the leftovers. It might be that they already have a partnership with a charity, in which case all the hard work is already done for you!
Choose organic, locally produced food and drink, as it will cut transport emissions and helps smaller farming communities to thrive.
· LED Lighting
LED lighting is the most energy-efficient (up to 80% more efficient than conventional bulbs), the cleanest and most eco-friendly way of illumination, and they are designed to last much longer than conventional light bulbs. They’re incredibly versatile for creating a variety of different looks, moods and atmospheres but with its green credentials, you can be confident that your event will look stunning without negatively impacting on the environment.
· Use Local Suppliers
Putting in the effort to find local suppliers for your wedding is a small thing you can do to make your event more environmentally friendly. Buying or hiring from local florists, furniture suppliers, photographers and caters are all small things you can do to help make your event more environmentally friendly.
· Donate Your Flowers
Your floral arrangements are another big one. There are research organizations that will pick up your arrangements and donate them to local hospitals, senior centers, and homeless shelters. You can also gift extras to your venue’s service staff, family, or guests so they don’t go to waste.
· Hire When You Can
Single-use anything is not good for the environment. Forget plastic glasses, paper plates and paper napkins. Upgrade your whole event and reduce landfill waste and hire your linen and other tableware. Some venues will provide all of this as part of the event space charge.
Together we can help protect the planet ☺