Royal Wedding’s environmental impact will be huge

The Royal Wedding’s impact on the world will be big. Generating close to 7,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalents (CO2e) that is 12 times would the annual emission from the London palace or over 1,200 times the annual emissions of the normal UK household.

A great deal of the emissions are from guest by foreign guests arriving by plane as well as the means of transport used by the thousands that are expected to visit London to see the wedding.

Even though the Prince has tried to keep the wedding as green as possible with seasonal, local food and flowers as well as turning the lights off the energy, food and drink footprint will be quite substantial. Landcare Research has developed an internationally recognized way of counting carbon emissions and they estimated the total for the wedding.

Estimates of emissions includes; 13 tonnes for accommodations, energy usage, catering and landfill for the luncheon reception and evening dinner that will be at Buckingham Palace; 4,000 tonnes of CO2e will be from the 400,000 plus people arriving via the tube; another 200,000 via national rail to see the event in central London.

The Royal couple has done their share to keep a limited footprint. The gold in Kate’s ring is reported to be from a Welsh mine instead of one that exploits its workers. Her gown could very well be ethical if she were to have chosen vegan silk and organic fair-trade cotton.

Even though they have tried to keep it green, he chooses an abroad honeymoon in Jordan rather than at home and proposed to her in Kenya instead of London. Plus they could have sent out virtual invitations and opted not to or not use paper to wrap presents but instead reusable cloth.

Where does the recycling and rubbish fit in to the equation. There were over 10 road sweeps out a month prior to the wedding to make sure the area around the Abbey and the Palace were clean. The night of the wedding there will be 80 sweeps gathering all the rubbish and the main part will be done by the next morning even though the amount that will be recycled is not known.