A ‘green wedding’ has nothing to do with the color green. It refers to an environmentally conscious wedding that minimizes the negative impact it has on the environment. The trend towards ‘green weddings’ or ‘eco-friendly weddings’ is not new in Europe or the USA. It is, however, relatively new in the Middle East.
But the good news is that many couples are becoming increasingly conscious of the carbon footprint their actions and choices leave on the environment, even when those affect one of the most important days of a couple’s life; their wedding.
So, what can you do to green your wedding? Here are 10 simple ideas to consider:
1. Minimize the number of guests. Fewer transportation runs and less food waste at the reception, means better outcome for the environment.
2. Choose the wedding reception’s location wisely. The closer it is to the majority of your guests, the less Carbon Dioxide emissions your wedding will generate.
3. Minimize energy consumption at your reception, by making sure that the banquette hall, for example, has energy saving light bulbs installed, or better still, use more candles (bee wax candles are best). If weather permits, an outdoor wedding saves on heating and cooling bills.
4. Work carefully with the venue or caterer on the amount of food needed for your reception and set a policy for the reuse of unused food (e.g. donate to a charity organization). Use only locally grown produce and minimize imported food. Organic fruit and vegetables grown in your country are the best choice for a green buffet.
5. Use in season locally grown flowers, water tolerant plants or fruit & vegetable centerpieces that can be reused.
6. Do not use any plastic plates, cutlery or cups.
7. Do not use paper napkins.
8. Do not use bottled water. Ask the caterer to provide filtered water in glass jugs.
9. Ask your guests to carpool.
10. If using wedding favors, choose gifts that are made of natural material produced by local communities (e.g. natural soap bars or candles, honey, lavender and/or herbs sacs).