Independence Day honors the signing of the Declaration of Independence on July 4, 1776. On this federal holiday, families gather to celebrate the birth of America with a cookout, fireworks show, and lots of red, white, and blue decorations.
However, Americans’ biggest celebration is not all green. According to research in 2021, Independence Day fireworks polluted the air 42% more than on a typical day.
So, how to make your Independence Day more eco-friendly? Check out how to green your typical red, white, and blue celebration with these 9 tips.
1. Shop Organic
Some of the most consumed foods during the Fourth of July are corn and meat. Naturally, they taste the best sizzling on the grill. In fact, the Fourth of July is the biggest-selling holiday for fresh sweet corn. Sweet, engineered corn that is. Research shows that about 90% of the American corn crop is genetically engineered.
According to Marketwatch, during the two weeks leading up to the holiday, people spent more than $800 million on beef, $371 million on poultry, and $218 million on pork. Shrimps and salmon are Americans’ favorites too.
To make your Independence Day more eco-friendly, try to go for the organic food in your market. Tenere has already compiled the list of the best eco-friendly grocery shopping tips right here.
2. Put Sustainable Meats On The Grill
No Independence Day celebration is complete without hot dogs; they are an American institution. It is estimated that US hot dog consumption reaches 150,000,000 on the Fourth of July.
Nonetheless, they are far from healthy: made en masse using beef scraps and fat, artificial flavorings, MSG, sugar, maltodextrin, and hazardous food additives and preservatives such as phosphates and sodium nitrite.
This year, why not put something greener on your grill? Organic meat has been on the rise. It tastes just as good, without any environmental risks. Its sales also support American farmers who prefer to employ sustainable farming techniques.
3. Avoid Charcoals
Cookouts are one of the most common activities in the summer. During the hot summer months, cookouts with charcoal contribute significantly to air pollution. On Independence Day, an estimated 225,000 metric tons of carbon dioxide are released from cooking burgers and hot dogs.
If it is possible, try gas, electric, or propane barbecues instead of charcoal grills. You should even offer vegetable or bean burgers to minimize your carbon footprint even further!
4. Consider Kegs For Beer
The Fourth of July is one of the occasions when Americans consume the most beer. According to WalletHub, last July, Americans spent over $1.4 billion on beer and wine. That leaves a lot of discarded beer cans and bottles unrecycled.
You don’t really need to drink green beer if you want to stay sustainable. If you’re planning a party, buying a keg instead of many beer cases is an easy way to reduce this waste! Earn extra green points by supplying reusable mugs for your visitors.
5. Go Easy On Personal Firework Shows
Fireworks are a Fourth of July tradition. But they are hazardous. When exploded, these beautiful pollutants blast a large number of dangerous chemicals and smoke into the air with each burst. What goes up must come down. Fireworks’ propellant and colorant residue might end up in lakes and rivers, polluting water sources.
Independence Day fireworks pollute the air 42% more than on a typical day. Consider attending a communal fireworks show instead of purchasing your own. Biodegradable fireworks are a terrific choice if you need to put on a personal light display!
6. Get Beach Bound
Honoring the Fourth of July at the beach is a beautiful way to honor America. However, discarding rubbish and contaminating the river is definitely not.
These suggestions will make for a more eco-friendly Independence Day:
- Remember to clean up after yourself.
- Alternatively, carry your food and beverages in reusable or recyclable containers.
- Use paraben-free, zero-waste sunscreen to avoid contaminating the water.
- Carpool or ride your bike to the beach. These are good options to lower your carbon footprint.
7. Repurpose Decorations
Recycling or repurposing existing decorations results in less waste! Most Independence Day decorations are usually papery or textile. This means that throwing them away is a waste of recycling opportunities.
For better aesthetics, consider repurposing your Christmas decorations for the Fourth of July. Arrange red, white, and blue bulb decorations in a glass bowl or vase for the centerpiece. Festive foods, such as bowls of strawberries and blueberries, also make excellent decorations and leave little waste when you have hungry guests!
8. Make It A House Party
One of the most popular spots for a Fourth of July party is near the water. Whether it’s a lake, a pool, or the beach, all are fair destinations. However, AAA estimates that 44.2 million Americans will travel 50 miles or more from home on their Independence Day vacation.
This Independence Day, you might want to consider making your Fourth of July party closer to home to reduce your carbon impact. As a motivator, the Environmental Protection Agency provides a wonderful carbon footprint calculator.
9. Select Biodegradable Tableware
For big gatherings, many households opt for plastic plates and tableware, along with paper cups. They are easy to place and easier to clean since they are replaceable.
But according to some estimates, in the United States alone, the number of plastic utensils discarded after only one use is 40 billion each year. Plastic cutlery is one of the objects that will not be recycled even if it is placed in the recycling bin.
To contribute to lowering plastic pollution, try switching to biodegradable tableware and paper cups. These are usually made from bamboo, so you know they are safe to eat. They also look great and make cleaning up just as quick, easy, and guilt-free.
In the midst of the star-spangled frenzy, sustainability is an afterthought.
This year, change things up a bit with Tenere’s sustainable tips for an eco-friendly Independence Day. But being green is not the only thing Tenere is interested in. We also supply a lot of Independence Day coupons for your affordable shopping.
Every time you shop with us, you are also contributing to tree-planting efforts worldwide.