Four Steps to a Green BBQ!
Happy 4th of July! America turns 240 this year! Whether you celebrate at the beach, at the park, or in the backyard, here are four steps to a green barbecue:
Natural, organic, and pasture-raised foods are the best way to make your barbecue green. Applegate Farms and Organic Prairie provide certified natural and organic meat products that are both delicious and environmentally conscious. Organic vegetables from your local Farmers Market or home garden are another way to enrich taste, while the reuse of ingredients in multiple dishes will reduce waste.
Before you buy a case of plastic water, consider the pitchers in your cabinets at home. Fill them up with cucumber water or homemade iced tea and lemonade to add a touch of home style to your cookout. This greatly reduces the waste caused by individual beverage containers that often are thrown out half full at barbecues.
There is much debate over which grill is greener: gas or charcoal? The argument hinges on the fuel used to power each. Gas grills use petroleum or natural gas, which are non-renewable fossil fuels. Yet gas grills produce less smoke and fewer carbon emissions than their charcoal counterparts. The Oak Ridge National Laboratory for the Department of Energy conducted a study, which found that gas grills generate 5.6 pounds of carbon dioxide per hour, while charcoal grills produce 11 pounds per hour. However, before charcoal grills are discounted, consider chunk or lump coal. This type of coal is greener than the conventional charcoal briquettes and contains no chemical additives. It is carbon neutral to burn and it is sold in most health food and home improvement stores.
Ditch disposable paper and plastic ware. Instead, bring your plates, cups, and silverware from home. These are cute and easy to clean. Once everyone is done, scrape off the plates over a trashcan and rinse them with water or place them in a grocery tote to wash at home. Another affordable option is to use compostable plates and utensils made of potato or cornstarch.
However you and your family decide to green your barbecues this summer, Remyndr wishes you a safe and happy Independence Day!