Few things remind you of life’s sweeter side like anticipating a summer barbecue. This year’s celebrations promise to be merrier than ever after more than a year of pandemic restrictions.
However, you can party in a way that is gentle to the planet. Here are eight tips for how to host an eco-friendly barbecue this spring.
Choose the Right Grill
Should you use gas, charcoal or pellets? Your choice of grill type and material impacts the eco-friendliness of your barbecue. Fortunately, it isn’t challenging — even though people perceive propane as environmentally unfriendly, it is clean-burning and produces minimal emissions.
Pellets are also a green choice. These wonders transform approximately 90% of their energy into usable heat. They don’temit much smoke — just enough to impart the signature flavor.
Just Say No to Plastic
From tablecloths to dinnerware, your local discount store offers no shortage of inexpensive products designed to make cleanup from your barbecue a breeze — for you. However, many of these products are too thin to recycle, meaning that they end up in landfills and the bellies of aquatic wildlife.
What options do you have? You could go with reusable everything. However, if you are expecting a horde and don’thave time to slave away washing dishes, you can go with more sustainable disposable alternatives, such as bamboo.
Plant Some Mint
Insect pests can run in your picnic or barbecue. However, reaching for the pesticides comes with a heady environmental impact. The chemicals get into the soil and water and release toxins into the air.
Spearmint and peppermint soothe upset stomachs and repel insects like mosquitoes and flies. Plant these liberally around your patio border or fill your apartment balcony with container plants. You’ll have fresh herbs to use for cooking and teas and won’t need sprays to enjoy a bug-free meal.
Source Food Locally
Spring means the return of fresh greens and other produce — why not enjoy the bounty of your local harvest? Head to your farmers market to pick up your meal. You’ll enjoy organic goodness that didn’t spend hours in an emissions-producing truck.
When food producers have to transport goods over long distances, the planes, trains and automobiles involved in transport all produce carbon emissions. You get a nutritional boost for your eco-consciousness. Plants begin to lose their nutrients within a few days of harvest, and those that came from nearby farms offer the most vitamins for your buck.
Provide Recycling Bins
If you host your barbecue at a public park, you might notice that the facility lacks recycling bins. Please bring some from home instead of turning your soda and beer cans into landfill fodder. It doesn’t take much — empty cat litter buckets or cardboard boxes make suitable containers on the fly.
Use Natural Climate Control
If you recently emerged from frigid winter temperatures, you might crave little more than the sun’s heat. However, standing in direct light can make even pleasant temperatures turn you sweaty. Please provide plenty of shade in the form of umbrellas and canopies.
If you party into the wee hours and nights get chilly, your choice of patio warmer affects the eco-friendliness of your barbecue. Gas heaters produce considerable emissions, and wood-burning also releases smoke. Your greenest bet is to choose electric heaters — they quickly reach their desired temperature and turn off and on with a button touch.
Get Creative With Napkins and Bibs
Barbecues are delightfully messy, but you can’t wipe all that goodness on your shirt and pants. That means going through lots of napkins — destroying countless trees.
Who says you can’t get a little wacky? If you have some old T-shirts you intended to recycle, use them as smock-style bibs instead. Alternatively, cut them up and sew them into cloth napkins.
Spread Some Sustainable Love
Did you get into the gardening craze this past pandemic year? If so, why not spread a little sustainable love as a thank you gifts instead of buying something? You’ll save money and the planet.
You can take herb clippings and sprout them to distribute to invitees. Alternatively, you can sprout some of your heirloom seeds in a recycled container and give your friends free goodness for their gardens at home.
Host an Eco-Friendly Barbecue This Spring With These Tips
If you are like many, you can’t wait to get out there for your first seasonal cookout. Host an eco-friendly barbecue this spring with these tips.