Friday, September 2, 2016
Today many Americans will be shopping for their big end of summer Labor Day bash this weekend. I wouldn't be hypocritical enough to suggest that you don't have a party, or even attempt something as unAmerican as an all vegetarian party, but there are many ways you can minimize your party's environmental impact.
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Your Living Green editor
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Plastic plates, and even worse styrofoam plates, are environmental losers. For practically the same price you can buy biodegradable plates, cups and cutlery. Biodegradable partyware is widely available in everything from sugarcane (or bagasse), to bamboo, to naturally shed palm leaves, so there is no reason to pollute your party with plastic.
Did you know you can buy sustainably-produced charcoal briquettes? There are several brands that produce charcoal made from recycled industrial scrap wood versus the coal dust, starch and sawdust that most briquettes are made from. Some are even produced using clean-energy turbine heat. Propane is also another good option as it produces close to half the emissions of generic charcoals.
Buy all aluminum. You will certainly have tubs or coolers full of ice cold beverages. Make sure to buy pop and beer in aluminum cans and then put recycling bins right next to the coolers. Recycling plastic water bottles is good for the environment, but recycling all that aluminum will bring you 30 to 40 cents per pound, depending on where you go!