Instead, I want these posts to help you sort through your own sustainable choices. Lists about green wedding choices, while helpful as a one-stop-reference and initial starting point, aren't as useful in helping us measure our means and options. I find it more helpful to approach such things with questions and research, wanting to know the whys and wherefores underlying the list's prescriptions. And so, I will trust my ever-so-intelligent readers to want the same. We want background. We want the information with which to make our own informed decisions. We want multiple options on how to achieve a greener wedding that work for our unique needs and situations.
I wanted to start by defining what I mean by sustainability. For me, sustainability is more than simply buying green products. It's taking a hard look at each aspect of our wedding and our lives and thinking through the three Rs of environmental action: reduce, reuse, recycle (with most of the emphasis on the first two). It's about asking whether we really need an item, whether we can find an eco-friendly option to meet that need, whether we can't and want it anyhow, or whether we say eff it and go without. It's a lot more than buying a green product. It's also more than simply focusing on environmental impacts - for us, we're also considering the impact of our choices on helping sustain our local community and as helping to nurture our new and intertwined family. It's a broader, more expansive look at sustainability because what we're really aiming for is a sustainable life when assessing our physical and human resources.
Each week, I plan to tackle one major environmental topic. These topics will mirror the classes I teach at Sustainable Works, and will be broken into seven sections:
- I'll start the weekly post with a big picture overview about why the specific environmental topics matters and the major problems currently related to it.
- From there, I'll narrow the focus to the issue at hand: wedding planning. I'll look at how typical wedding-related activities and items impact/are impacted by the week's topic.
- Lastly, I'll offer some approaches and solutions you can use to mitigate or address the problems while planning your wedding.