Well, I think we’ve got this global warming thing pretty much under control these days. Because buying “green” is now quite the fashion. And if the answer to an environmental crisis really is just proper shopping, then I do have faith in Americans’ ability to shop our way out of trouble.
Of course, there’s always the possibility that more consumption is not the answer to a problem of misused resources, that if we all buy long-life lightbulbs, we’ll be drowning in the regular bulbs we throw away, or that rather than buying a new low-impact eyeshadow, it would be better…not to buy anything. The trick, as my colleague Scott Olin Schmidt points out, is to figure out how to make money off selling conservation. A little government money for solar energy wouldn’t hurt either. But I’ll just worry about all that tomorrow.
Because today, what’s one of the biggest sinkholes of shopping excess; a big, bloated ball of opportunity to blow through $5000 in flowers and $10,000 in white silk, lace and sequins in exactly four hours? Yup, the modern wedding extravaganza. But not to fear, even weddings can go green now. Judging by all the how-to reports, there’s at least some interest in green weddings, including among the highest spending wedders, those most likely to be spewing the most carbon on their special day. Sure, Time has looked at the subject, but even a magazine devoted to excess like Town & Country had a recent article on green weddings.
So make those flowers locally grown and organic, say the green wedding tipsters. This is easier to do in some places than others. Which probably explains Google co-founder Sergey Brin’s recent wedding. Brin, one of the current crop of ecologically minded super rich, presumably kept his environmental principles in mind for his nuptials. So it must have been the access to locally grown flowers that led to flying the whole crowd from San Francisco to the Bahamas on his private 757 airplane instead of loading them on a bus for a trip to a nice Hilton in nearby Oakland.
Naw, it’s too easy to knock the rich and famous for their private plane jaunts. I surely don’t want anyone to look too closely at my washing machine habits, for example. And even your average folks’ wedding gets a whole lot of people jetting in for the weekend.
But the World Wildlife Fund has the answer to that in its tips for a green wedding:
Consider purchasing carbon offset credits to mitigate [honeymoon flights or wedding guest travel]. You can purchase them yourself for your honeymoon or ask for the credits as a gift. You can also ask guests to purchase these to offset their own travel.
Asking people you invite to a wedding to purchase carbon offset credits probably would be a very successful way to have guests achieve the ultimate in energy savings: staying home.
Portovert says it’s the first and only (so far) magazine “for eco-savvy brides and grooms.” The most intriguing part of its site is where it says, “Calculate your wedding emissions.” Amazing what modern science has made possible.
Green’s not only the new black, it’s practically the new white too.