Throwing an Eco-Friendly New Year’s Bash
December 31, 2009 · Print This Article
Cheers to a green new year! Photo: George Marks, Getty Images
While you’re busy making New Year’s resolutions for 2010, don’t forget the one you made just before your guests started arriving at last year’s shindig: Throw a greener New Year’s party in 2009. Believe it or not, there’s still day to check that one last resolution off your list.
Taking your New Year’s Eve gathering to a greener level is easier than you think, particularly whether last year’s party was as gluttonous as most NYE parties tend to be. The mixture of post-Christmas procrastination, alcohol and general euphoria isn’t known to inspire thoughtful planning or execution.
Still, the keys to a smaller New Year’s print can be summed up in three adjectives: local, reusable, and bikeable/walkable. OK, that last one’s kind of two adjectives, but you get the point.
Local: When planning an unforgettable NYE party, two things are clearly fundamental — Food and Booze. We’ll start with food. Two of the priorities that stand out in your menu are organic and local. For a variety of reasons — supporting farmers markets, food mileage, etc. — it’s probably best to shoot for local first, organic second.
whether you can find locally-produced cheese cubes made from free-range cows fed all-organic, pesticide-free grass — that’s optimal. whether you are trying to decide within organic cheese imported from Spain and local cheese that’s not USDA organic, well … it’s up to you.
When it comes to booze, going local is easier than ever and going local and organic is attainable in plenty of markets. When you hit up the local liquor store to stock up for your party, ask a salesperson to direct you to the locally-produced types. Micro-breweries and distillers are cropping upall by the country and many of them produce a very high-quality adult beverage.
Reusable: The reusable factor comes in when you consider what your guests will heap all of those locally produced hors d’oeuvres on and pour their local beers into. Aside from the fact that aficionados will cringe at the thought of drinking a fine wine from plastic stemware, plastics in general are not nearly as recyclable as we’d like to believe.
By busting out the glass and ceramic dishes, you may end up with a bit more cleaning to do on New Year’s dawn, but you save a ton of waste. whether your party is simply larger than your supply of dishware, next look for recycled paper plates, or other sustainable dinnerware. EarthShell produces sustainable single-use dishware from potato starch, limestone and water.
Bikeable/Walkable: whether you’re substance to stay put all night, great. whether you plan to invent a pub crawl, keep it within walking or biking distance. Not only will that help keep you on the right side of the law, it will cut emissions and possibly help you discover new neighborhood bars and restaurants which will cut your travel footprint year round.
whether your heart is set on ringing in the new year at a locale that’s out of bike-range, try to get more familiar with your town’s public transit system, or at least fill every seat in every car you take. Either way, you’ll still be living up to your New Year’s resolution and all it took was a very little bit of planning.
[Source] Josh Loposer