Moreover, summer is literally in the air: everything is in bloom and fragrant, the days are long and we are full of energy and zest for action - the ideal conditions, therefore, to celebrate life in a lasting way.
Moment, do the words "sustainable" and "celebrate" even fit together in one sentence?
That sustainability has nothing to do with an uncool Birkenstock-slipper image is now well known. And if it sounds a bit like a party pooper to one or the other, we show how we can celebrate and enjoy the feeling of summer, while at the same time respecting our environment and that both can be easily reconciled with each other.
Festivals & Co.
Live music, workshops, art and culinary specialities - festivals are the crème de la crème of celebration. But as beautiful as they are: open airs are also environmentally friendly events. For example, a spokeswoman for the City of Nuremberg confirmed that the legacy of the celebrating masses after the rock in the park festival piles up to a remarkable 300 tons of garbage.
It's not that hard to be a little more prudent. Just make sure to be sustainable when you arrive and form carpools or use the bus, train and shuttle service to the festival area, which is offered by the organizer in most cases. All this makes it unnecessary to arrive with your own car.
Use a high quality tent that won't break during the festival.
You can also avoid unnecessary garbage by leaving disposable dishes on the supermarket shelf during the preparations and instead pack dishes made of wood or bamboo, which is biodegradable. A pretty and light alternative would be enamel tableware. It's best to have the food at the food stalls put straight onto your plate.
And last but not least: Equip yourself with a few bin liners to dispose of your garbage yourself afterwards.
We especially like the festivals that are completely focused on sustainability, such as the Streetlife Festival in Munich. This is backed by the Munich environmental initiative Green City e. V., which launched this event on the occasion of the Europe-wide car-free day. Since 2000, Ludwigstrasse and Leopoldstrasse have been turned into a car-free zone on two weekends every year. Instead, there are concerts by national and local bands, graffiti workshops, organic markets, regional products, information stands on climate and nature conservation and an interactive farm for children along a 1.5 kilometre stretch. There is a climbing wall and the baseball field and the skateboard test track are popular places for sports fans. All this is supplied with green electricity. As this is a street festival, meadows or trees are not damaged and the caterers are only allowed to use reusable dishes. The next date for the festival is 7 and 8 September 2019 and admission is free. A little further south, in French-speaking Switzerland, the Paleo Festival Nyon takes place every year at the end of July. During the six days, around 35,000 visitors celebrate every day. This festival is also completely supplied with green electricity. The ticket is also the ticket for public transport and the organiser also uses special trains so that visitors do not have to travel by car. More than 5000 volunteers work at the Paleo to keep the area clean and the gastronomic offer is regional, organic, vegetarian and vegan. The Paleo Festival has already received several awards for its social and ecological commitment, including the Green'n'Clean Award from the European Festival Association.
Sustainable through the summer - at home and on the road
Grilled food is as much a part of summer as gin is to a tonic. One approach to being sustainable when barbecuing would be to borrow a grill or share it with friends or relatives - barbecue sharing, so to speak. Also pay attention to where the charcoal comes from. Most of the charcoal in this country is imported from the Ukraine, Paraguay or Nigeria. Sometimes the production of coal is connected with overexploitation of forests or corruption. On the other hand, products marked with the Naturland seal or the FSC seal and originating from European hardwood forests guarantee the ecological production of the coal.
The disposable version of the grill should be completely omitted, as should chemical lighters. You will have the probably most climate-friendly barbecue evening with an electric grill, which is operated with green electricity. And what lands on the grill is also part of sustainability. Because a particularly large amount of climate-damaging emissions are produced in the manufacture of animal products such as steak and grilled cheese. Quite apart from that, not only meat tastes good grilled, but vegetables too. Try out veggie grills, for example with rosemary potatoes with asparagus.
Wash aluminium bowls to use them several times or use a bowl or grill pan that is suitable for permanent use.sauces and dips can be made by yourself and served in preserving jars.
If you have organised your fridge well, you can quickly find all the ingredients and don't have to search long. This is also good for the environment, because less of the cold produced is lost. After the barbecue you can dispose of the ashes in the compost or - in very small quantities - use them as direct fertiliser in the flowerbed.
You can find the ingredients for your green barbecue at the market. Summertime is market time and for those who do not yet shop at markets, now is the best time to start. Because now there are many, inexpensive offers from the region and delicious seasonal goods. In addition, cheerful conversations and a personal exchange with the sellers are included. Something that you don't want to miss at some point. A little tip for your visit to the market: Don't write a classic shopping list, because you might not get what you want. Stay open and look only for "two vegetables for the barbecue" or "salad" without committing yourself. And that's how you will always discover new varieties.
If you treat yourself to an ice cream in between strolling around the stands, you can do so without a paper cup or plastic spoon - even if you don't feel like having a waffle. Just take a jar and spoon from home and have the ice cream filled directly into it.
When you are outside, use sunscreen rather than sunscreen. Sun creams often contain a lot of chemicals and microplastics. Airy, light clothing, cloths and sun hats also provide effective protection from the sun and are also environmentally friendly and healthy.
Nothing new but important: don't forget to drink! If you have your own drinking bottle with you, you can have it refilled with free service water; in cafés and shops that participate in the initiative "Refill Deutschland". You can recognise them by the Refill sticker attached and you can find an overview at: http://refill-deutschland.de/.
Sustainable Starting your holiday is a matter of choosing a holiday destination in a not too distant area. Maybe you can take the train or rent camping equipment. Seals of approval can also help you choose a tour operator and accommodation. The TourCert label identifies social and ecological tour operators; accommodation is labelled with labels such as Bio-Hotels, Viabono or the European Eco-label, and is characterised by meeting standards of sustainability. You can recognise "green" campsites by the ECOCAMPING logo.
Before you go on your trip, check that all power guzzlers at home are switched off and that nothing is using electricity in standby mode.
In this sense: have a great summer, enjoy the carefree atmosphere, be environmentally aware.