How to have an Environmental Friendly Paddy’s Day!
St Patrick’s Day is almost here and while the day is celebrated with parades, family activities, parties, let’s get in touch with the intended meaning of the day, which derives from spiritual renewal. Why not get in touch with the intended meaning and give back to mother nature while making the most of the day.
While, St Patrick’s Day is reminiscent of shamrocks, leprechauns and pints, the overall theme for the day is everything that has to do with Ireland, specifically the colour green. On this day, green in everything is almost mandatory whether it be clothing, accessories, food, decorations and even beer. There are ways to enjoy the holiday and go green, in its literal sense as well, and you don’t need to own a green belt in order to be eco-friendly. Below is the list of a few simple things that we can all do to be green on Paddy’s day:
- Did you know, the sparkly shamrock headbands which are loved all over the country, when manufactured, release all the chemicals used to dye and decorate them, into the environment. Why not get creative and make your own green decorations like hats, shamrocks, head bands etc. Crafts and art can be a great stress buster as well. Recycled paper, leftover fabric and organic paints can be used for this purpose.
- Why not save yourself time and money and wear something green that you already own in your wardrobe? It’s the eco-friendliest way to dress green as less consumption means less waste. If you do want to make a purchase in the holiday spirit, support one of the many fashion brands who manufacture responsibly, keeping nature in mind.
- Buying used decorations or clothes has many benefits as well. Buying used costs less and uses no extra resources & energy to create. Usage of landfill space is reduced as well and buying used products usually means buying locally hence promoting local industry and the market.
- Use biodegradable plates and cups if you’re having or attending a party on St Patrick’s Day and avoid using non-biodegradable plastic utensils. Plastic, though recyclable, mostly ends up on the road and ultimately in landfills contributing to land and air pollution. Also, it takes vast amounts of water and energy to recycle them and make them reusable. A good alternative to plastic water bottles is metal bottles which are reusable, cheaper and healthier as well.
In sync with heritage and tradition, beer consumption is at its peak during this holiday, the Irish Grand National and warmer months on the horizon only contributing to the encouraged consumption. Beer comes with a few shortcomings as far as nature is considered. These shortcomings lie in its packaging and carbon emissions, generated while transporting & chilling it in freezers for customers who prefer chilled beer for better taste. Here are a few ways to make a sustainable choice when it comes to beer:
- Order a beer on the tap as it’s the best green option and tastes better anyways. Kegs are efficient vessels as compared to glasses or cans. The best option, entirely from an environmental perspective is to walk to the nearest bar and get a frosty mug of beer on tap.
- When in doubt, or if the beer of your choice is not available on tap, always choose cans over glass bottles. Aluminium is a highly recyclable metal while the market for recycled glass is still limited. Glass recycling is not as effective as it’s claimed to be as it’s energy intensive, involves a lot of labour and is still not economically viable. On the other hand, aluminium recycling avoids 95% of the energy taken to make the original can and is economically viable.
- How about trying some vegan options for this Paddy’s Day like Bulmers Pear Cider or Harp Irish Lager which are eco-friendlier. There is an option of ordering craft beer as well, because in most cases the bars use reusable glasses.
- Let’s support the local breweries this year and help the local economy. It will also help in reducing the shipping impact of beers, which are produced halfway across the country or are imported from various parts of the world.
- If you like your drink green for the Holiday, dye your beverages using eco-friendly and natural food colouring. You can skip store-bought dye full of chemicals and make your own natural dye using saffron, spinach, sap or gamboge.
Here are a few more tips on celebrating your Irish side in a greener way