10 Green Initiatives to Take for St. Paddy’s Day

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Most people celebrate St. Paddy's Day by dressing in green, going to pubs, and drinking vast amounts of green beer, but there are other fun and more productive ways to honor the patron saint of Ireland than just partying. It's the perfect time of year to go green and give back to Mother Nature by practicing environmental responsibility. Make St. Paddy's Day even greener with these 10 green initiatives:

  1. Skip the corned beef

    Corned beef and cabbage is a traditional St. Paddy's Day meal that's enjoyed by Irish and non-Irish Americans alike. It might seem blasphemous to celebrate St. Paddy's without the beloved corned beef, but if you truly want to go green, cut out the meat and enjoy the cabbage and potatoes as is. If you're not a big cabbage fan, replace it with another hearty green vegetable like spinach, kale, Brussels sprouts, or broccoli.

  2. Use public transportation

    This St. Patrick's Day, leave the car at home and take public transportation to your destination. Don't have access to a subway or bus? Ride your bike or walk instead. You'll be doing Mother Nature a favor by reducing your carbon emissions and protecting yourself from drinking and driving.

  3. Use reusable cups

    There's no telling how much trash we produce on St. Patrick's Day, but it's probably an astronomical amount. You can do your part to reduce waste by using recyclable cups or mugs on St. Paddy's Day. Even your standard red Solo cup can be washed and reused multiple times before it needs to be recycled.

  4. Go organic

    Challenge yourself to go green by consuming only organic food and beers on St. Paddy's Day. Organic beers are made from natural, sustainably grown ingredients, and they typically come in eco-friendly packaging. It's even better for the environment to buy locally grown organic goods.

  5. Go thrift store shopping

    Instead of buying a new green T-shirt or a new shamrock headband, take a trip to your local thrift store and load up on recycled St. Paddy's Day gear. Not only will you save some cash buying from a thrift store, but you're recycling a perfectly good article of clothing that would have otherwise been thrown out.

  1. Use natural green dye

    St. Paddy's Day just isn't the same without green-dyed everything, but to truly make it a green initiative, you should opt for a natural green dye. Whether you buy natural green food coloring or experiment on your own, you won't have to worry about ingesting the incredibly questionable additive, Green No. 3.

  2. Plant a tree

    What better way to be green than to use your green thumb and plant a tree for St. Paddy's Day? Your green contribution can help improve the air we breathe by reducing CO2 from the air and giving off oxygen. In addition to their aesthetic and environmental benefits, trees can also help reduce cooling costs by shading your home and providing a protective barrier during heavy winds.

  3. Make green decorations

    Forget plastic shamrock necklaces and store-bought kilts – make these St. Patrick's Day essentials yourself. You don't need a well-stocked craft collection to make these eco-friendly decorations; random items from around the house will do just fine. Invite friends over to tie-dye green T-shirts and make paper shamrock necklaces.

  4. Give back to the Irish community

    Doing something nice for others is always green and good for the world. In honor of St. Patrick's Day, you might consider giving back to your Irish community. Most big cities have a handful of Irish-American organizations that could use donations and volunteers. If your city doesn't have any Irish groups, you can always join Habitat for Humanity or another charitable, eco-friendly cause.

  5. Throw your own green St. Paddy's party

    If you really want to go green, you might have to throw a St. Paddy's Day party yourself. You can go all out with the green theme by supplying naturally dyed organic beer for your guests and creating eco-friendly St. Paddy's Day decorations that your friends will love. The options are endless.

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