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How to Have an Eco-Friendly Wedding

Diana Chaplin | July 26, 2016 | 3 min read

If you're getting prepared to say "I do" any time soon, you might have started to do some research on how to have an eco-friendly weddingTo give you a better idea of the size of the industry, let's start with some wedding stats.

Wedding Fun Facts

  • On average 2.4 million weddings take place in the United States per year – that means 4.8 million people get married on an annual basis;
  • Saturday and Sunday are the most popular days to tie the knot with an average of 44,230 weddings happening each weekend;
  • Not too big, not too small, the average guest list is about 165 people long;
  • Traditional American weddings add up to $29,858 on average;
  • Annually in the US, a total of $72 billion is spent on weddings;
  • $16 billion of annual spending is contributed to by the destination wedding market – which account for 24% of annual marriages;
  • Honeymoons sum up to a $12 billion-dollar-a-year industry;
  • Average amount spent on a bridal gown is $1,281.

Source: Brides

While these numbers are interesting, and perhaps even a bit surprising, knowing them can play an important role when planning a green wedding.

Going green and being economically conscious often fit together. If you're carefully planning your spending, you are naturally watching your consumption and thinking about ways to reduce your waste too.

sustainable wedding

how to have an Eco-friendly Wedding

1. Send out e-invitations

By choosing to send electronic invites you'll not only be saving money on printing and postage costs, but saving paper means saving trees!

Going electronic for invites is a great way to help mitigate deforestation for pulp and paper. 

2.  get married outside

Another way to have a green wedding is by choosing an outdoor space. 

Having a wedding ceremony in the great outdoors is not only a great way to connect with nature, but, thanks to natural sunshine, marrying outside can also help to save energy by reducing the amount of lighting needed!

3. RENT, sell or consign your gown 

Given that most brides only wear their gown for once, why not share the love, and either rent a dress or buy a dress that’s been previously worn?

If you choose to buy a new dress,  you can opt to sell or cosign it after you've worn it.

4. choose local  and sustainable foods  

Plan your wedding menu to include locally sourced food.

You can also consider offering a fully or partially vegetarian meal, the fewer animal products you choose, the lower the environmental impact.

If possible, work directly with farmers in your region, which will help to reduce the amount of transportation distance and will also stimulate your local economy.

5. compost, recycle and reduce your waste

Ahead of your wedding, good planning goes a long way in helping to reduce waste. Ask guests to RSVP in advance so that you can plan accordingly, and if possible, opt for plated dinners as opposed to buffet dinners.

At the wedding venue, ensure you have recycle and compost bins on-site of your wedding ceremony to to reduce your waste going to landfills.

6. go on an eco-friendly honeymoon

Go on an eco-friendly honeymoon – there are a growing number of eco-resorts that are catering to newlyweds. In addition, a big culprit of carbon emissions is travel, keeping this in mind when planning your get-a-way can go a long way. Staying closer to home & using public transport while traveling are just a couple of ways to lighten your environmental impact.

Another green idea is to plant trees to commemorate your big day. Trees offer so many benefits to the environment and global community – planting is a wonderful gesture to give back to the Earth. If you're a guest, you can also gift a tree in the couple's honour!

Plant Trees Where They're Needed Most
Plant Trees Where They're Needed Most
Plant Trees Where They're Needed Most
Plant Trees Where They're Needed Most
Plant Trees Where They're Needed Most
Plant Trees Where They're Needed Most
Plant Trees Where They're Needed Most
Plant Trees Where They're Needed Most
Plant Trees Where They're Needed Most
Plant Trees Where They're Needed Most
Plant Trees Where They're Needed Most
Plant Trees Where They're Needed Most
Plant Trees Where They're Needed Most
Plant Trees Where They're Needed Most

Plant Trees Where They're Needed Most

As the need for reforestation is global and ever-changing, we feature where trees are most needed now. Today, we're raising funds to jumpstart forest fire recovery in British Columbia. Learn more

With your help, we will:

  • Restore landscapes damaged by a historic season of wildfires
  • Create habitat for iconic biodiversity like the moose and grizzly bear
  • Support old-growth management areas to maintain complex ecosystems
  • This reforestation initiative is helping to restore the landscape in British Columbia after the Hanceville fire burned over 590,000 acres in 2017 and natural regeneration has not occurred. The fire has impacted the forest, soils, riparian ecosystems, wildlife, and water quality. Local indigenous communities have seen their ability to hunt and gather food drastically altered. But your support will go a long way! The goal of planting trees here is to not only re-establish a healthy forest, but also to plant species that will be resilient in the face of climate change. Thank you so much for your support of healthy forests! 🌲
  • Planting trees will catalyze the process of returning the area to a forested state. Newly planted trees will begin the process of sequestering atmospheric carbon, and over time improve the hydrological benefits of the forest. The ecosystems that have been greatly simplified by extreme fire conditions will once again become complex ecosystems, This project will also create habitat for many local wildlife species including mule deer, moose, black and grizzly bear, wolves, sandhill cranes, various raptors, songbirds, and small mammals.
  • A personalized tree certificate (see gallery) to say thanks for your donation. We'll also send you updates about this project, so you can track the impact your trees are having on the community and environment.
  • B.C.'s rich forest diversity includes more than 40 different species of native trees, with some of Canada’s most interesting and valuable tree species. In this project, we made efforts to maximize species diversity, including the following species: Douglas-fir, lodgepole pine, hybrid spruce, ponderosa pine, trembling aspen.

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