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Celebrate Your Love and the Planet with a Green Wedding

Green_WeddingWeddings can be both expensive and hard on the environment, but with a little planning, you can create a beautiful green wedding. From picking conflict-free, inexpensive trio ring sets to serving locally grown food, you can make your wedding a little greener without spending too much extra money. By thinking about ways to reduce and reuse, you might even save a little money. Here’s how to green your wedding:

1. Minimize Travel.

Choose a location for your wedding that will minimize how much travel your guests will need to do. Some couples with far-flung family and friends decide to have a formal wedding and reception in one area of the country and an informal reception with other loved ones in another area of the country to reduce their wedding expenses as well as to reduce how much their family and friends will need to travel. Other couples minimize travel by holding their wedding and reception in the same building or renting a bus to transport guests between the wedding and reception sites. If you and your guests will have a lot of long-distance travel to do, consider purchasing inexpensive carbon offsets.

2. Serve Sustainable Food.

Serve your guests organic food or seasonal food that is locally grown and harvested to reduce the environmental impact of feeding your wedding guests. Ask your caterer to serve your food on washable, reusable plates or disposable plates that are made from recycled materials. Use nice cloth napkins. Make sure you have facilities available for recycling soda cans and other recyclable materials.

3. Purchase Wedding Ring Sets Responsibly.

Not all diamonds are created equal. Be certain to choose diamonds that are mined in a responsible manner. Ask your jeweler for conflict-free diamonds that have not been used to fund slavery or war in Africa. Most diamonds sold in the United States today are certified conflict-free, but it is an important question to ask before purchasing a trio wedding ring set to celebrate your love. Fortunately, this certification should not increase the price of your rings. Purchasing a his and hers wedding ring set also saves you money and uses less packaging compared to purchasing individual wedding rings.

4. Use Recycled Paper or Go Paperless.

Print your wedding invitations on recycled paper products, or send online invitations to all or most of your guests (besides your grandmothers, unless they’re tech-savvy). Invitations made with recycled content should not cost much more than conventional invitations. Sending online invitations is best for the environment and will definitely save you money. Consider using e-mail or e-cards to send your thank-you notes as well.

Photo Credit: Alexandria Perone

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