Just4theplanet have been proud – with the consent of Clarence House – to cover all of Prince Charles’ environmental crusades over the past year or so – and now we are not surprised to hear that next weeks wedding of the century between Prince William and Kate Middleton will be a green low carbon affair!
Prince Charles, as father of the groom has undoubtedly had a big impact upon the celebrations by encouraging the use of local produce at the banquet and considerations for a low-impact celebratory strategy. One news paper has reported a rumour that Prince Charles has had an eco-home, complete with solar panels, low energy lighting, woodchip boiler and a reed bed sewage system built as a wedding present. I suppose if true, this would be the perfect wedding gift from the father of the groom; a global eco evangelist.
It has been revealed that Clarence House is taking a series of measures to reduce the environmental impact of the service, lunchtime reception, and dinner at Buckingham Palace. These include printing all documents on recycled paper and using FSC-certified wood and scaffolding in the building of the media stands. The carbon emissions of the wedding will also be offset as part of the royal household’s annual carbon footprinting exercise.
Specific details of the event, including whether Kate will be wearing a “green” dress remain a closely guarded secret, however the 1,500 guests will dine on sustainably sourced food and drink, while smelling sweet seasonal flowers.
A source with knowledge of the plans said: “[Sustainability] is considered by both Clarence House and Buckingham Palace in terms of everything it does, so you wouldn’t be wrong to assume that the food and flowers will be seasonal and sustainably sourced.”
A Clarence House spokeswoman refused to confirm details of the private sections of the day, but said both Clarence House and St James Palace always strive to minimise their carbon emissions and make any event as environmentally friendly as possible. The royal wedding is no exception,” she said. “This is achieved by reducing energy consumption and by greater use of renewable energy.”
She added that the household annually costs its emissions at market rate and contributes the money towards sustainability forestry projects in the UK and overseas.
With speculation mounting over the design of Kate’s dress, Rosie Ames, founder of “eco-chic” wedding planners Green Union, said she hoped the bride will don sustainable materials such as peace silk, or fair-trade cotton, which have not been touched with unnatural dyes.
As for flowers, Ames said William and Kate might choose lilacs, tulips, bluebells, sweet peas, or perhaps even a few roses which have come into season early.
Meanwhile, any salmon would probably be Scottish while asparagus would likely come from the Vale of Evesham.
As for transport, she added: “The carriage will obviously be carbon-friendly, although they’ll also be using Rolls-Royce.”
Ames added that her four-year-old business has experienced consistently growing demand from ethically minded brides and grooms-to-be. While the company refrains from encouraging couples to offset their carbon emissions, many people ask guests to plant trees for them as wedding gifts.
Indeed, one of the charities benefitting from the royal wedding gift fund is Earthwatch, which aims to find social and scientific answers to environmental issues.
The Honeymoon? Well Australia and the Caribbean have been mentioned, however William and Kate could make a low-carbon return to Scotland where they first met and demonstrate the understanding of a greener way of doing things, and an understanding of the citizens of Great Britain who are all tightening their belts.