Host an Eco-Friendly Wedding Celebration [Visual]

The average U.S. wedding produces more than 400 pounds of waste. Annually, more than 63 tons of CO2 is released into the atmosphere from U.S. weddings alone.

The wedding market has a reputation for being wasteful–and after reading the stats above, it’s not hard to see why. So many features of a wedding day are single-use, such as the decorations, the food, and even the fashion (ahem: wedding dresses).

While the above statistics can be disheartening, the good news is that more and more couples are taking note of the impact their special day is having on the world around them, and they’re taking steps to change that.

There are multiple benefits to hosting a green wedding day celebration. First and foremost, it’s good for the environment–but did you know that it’s also good for your wallet? Many of the eco-friendly wedding hacks you’ll find below will help save the planet, and your wallet.

Here are ten of our favorite eco-friendly wedding tips:

  1. Start with your wedding venue: Make going green easier on you and your spouse by working with a like-minded wedding venue. Finding a venue that prioritizes sustainability will make throwing your wedding there a breeze. If your venue already has sustainable processes built-in to their events you can easily streamline tasks such as eco-friendly waste removal. When you are touring specific venues, you can ask about their Energy star ratings and LEED certifications to get a good idea of just how committed they are to sustainability.

    Remember that outdoor venues such as farms, gardens, and campgrounds make great eco-friendly wedding sites.

  2. Host the ceremony and reception outside: One great way to host an eco-friendly event is to limit your electricity usage. If you take your ceremony and/or reception outside, you’ll do just that! Bonus points if you select a venue that allows you to host both your ceremony and reception onsite, as you’ll eliminate the carbon emissions that would result in traveling to separate sites.

  3. Go paperless: You can take steps to go paperless during the planning process. You don’t have to eliminate a traditional mail invite, but opt for sending out digital Save the Dates and set up a free wedding website on Zola to communicate details to your guests. Also ask vendors to send you PDFS of their offerings as opposed to paper packets, and make sure your vendor offers free wifi so you can retrieve forms you’ve saved on your email while you’re onsite.

  4. Embrace candlelight: Another great way to reduce electricity at your ceremony and/or reception is to cut the lights! You can set a romantic mood while also helping the planet by using gorgeous candlelight. The candle flames create a dreamy aesthetic and also help to keep bugs away.

  5. Stage a sustainable exit: Rather than tossing confetti or sending paper lanterns into the sky, consider a wedding exit that is good for the planet. There are tons of eco-friendly alternatives such as tossing leaves, petals, dried lavender, and bird seeds into the air. If you still have your heart set on confetti, opt for a biodegradable version.

  6. Arrange transportation: Cut down on carbon emissions by booking a shuttle for your guests. This provides a great guest experience for your guests, who won’t have to worry about getting to and from the wedding venue, and it also curbs drunk driving.

  7. Feature seasonal flowers: Using seasonal flowers in your wedding bouquet is not only more sustainable, it’s cheaper too! Your florist won’t have to transport out-of-season blooms from across the country, and can instead purchase flowers from local farms and markets. For reception decor, use potted plants rather than huge floral displays so that your plants can live on long past your wedding day.

  8. Buy ethical wedding rings: Don’t buy your rings from just anywhere. Before you purchase the engagement ring, wedding bands, and any additional jewelry for your special day, make sure it was sourced ethically. Your jeweler will have that information, and if they can’t provide it to you, move on to the next. Another great way to stay ethical with jewelry is to purchase vintage or antique.

  9. Rent or buy used: Make something old new again! There are so many things you can rent or buy used for your wedding day, starting with your tuxes, wedding dress and veil. You should also look into renting furniture and even decor items such as candlesticks.

  10. Hire the right caterer: Food waste can be one of the biggest contributors to your wedding days carbon footprint. Hire a caterer that will help you get rid of leftovers the right way–either by sending home leftovers, donating it to a nearby shelter, or composting it. Making your wedding menu vegetarian or vegan is the best way to be eco-friendly.

For more eco-friendly wedding ideas, check out this visual from Zola below!

Host an Eco-Friendly Wedding Celebration [Visual] | ecogreenlove
Visual by Zola

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<img class="wp-image-11867 size-full" title="Host an Eco-Friendly Wedding Celebration [Visual] | ecogreenlove" src="https://ecogreenlove.files.wordpress.com/2019/12/12092019_ecofrwedding.png" alt="Host an Eco-Friendly Wedding Celebration [Visual] | ecogreenlove" width="639" height="8192" /> Visual by <a href="https://www.zola.com/expert-advice/eco-friendly-wedding" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Zola</a>

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