5 Tips for Sustainable Summer Entertaining 

(NC) As the weather warms, people flock outdoors, indulging in BBQs, cookouts and backyard hangouts. All that entertaining adds up, so consider how the little choices you make can have a big impact on the environment. Here are five tips for a greener outdoor gathering. 

  1. Stay local
    Avoid adding to pollution levels by choosing a venue that’s local to most of your guests. This reduces the need for guests to drive or take transportation. If your house isn’t a suitable venue, opt for a local park or shoreline for a serene setting.
  2. Choose reusables
    It may be tempting to have a sink free of dishes following a summer gathering, but consider eliminating single-use cutlery, napkins and plates. Instead, use reusable options that better protect the planet.
  3. Plants over flowers
    Consider decorating with potted plants over fresh-cut flowers. These bouquets come with more emissions and a shorter shelf-life. Plants can liven up a space with greenery, are more cost-effective and along with producing oxygen throughout the day, may help purify the air by ridding it of common toxins and indoor pollutants.
  4. Grill greenly
    Make more eco-conscious grilling choices, whether that’s choosing products from carbon-neutral food companies like Maple Leaf Foods or considering new innovations such as electric grills that cut down on emissions.
  5. Love leftovers
    Take orders from guests in advance to cut down on food waste. If you have leftovers, think of ways to “upcook” them for a follow-up meal such as tasty toppings for salads or fillings for wraps. Of course, bones can be used in broth and veggies in stews, too.

If you love to entertain during the summer months, make the planet your guest of honour and treat it kindly.