Whether your loved one was an advocate for the environment or you simply want to improve your impact on the environment, there are lots of ways you can go green for his or her funeral. Here are just some of the many ideas to consider as you plan your loved one's final farewell.
Pick Fresh Flowers
When you order flowers from a florist, those flowers must be shipped from the nursery to the florist's shop, and then they must be shipped to you. Instead of wasting all of the fuel used when ordering flowers, consider simply picking flowers from your garden. You can bring them with when you attend the funeral, which means you won't be using any more gas or other fuels than you otherwise would. Another option is to ask each person attending the funeral to pick a single flower from his or her garden to place on the casket.
Some funeral homes now offer digital versions of funeral notices, obituaries and guest books. Take advantage of these options to reduce the amount of paper needed for your loved one's funeral, and take it a step further by emailing thank-you cards instead of purchasing paper ones to mail to friends and family. You can also specify in the obituary that you prefer emailed condolences over cards, but be sure to list an email address that is dedicated only for the funeral to avoid flooding your personal inbox. Instead of memory cards, consider purchasing a domain and building a website to pay tribute to your loved one. There are many companies online that offer simple drag-and-drop website building services, and some funeral homes offer tribute websites as well.
Host An All-In-One Funeral
Cut down on the amount of gas used for the funeral by hosting an all-in-one funeral service at the church or funeral home. You can have the viewing and service at either location, and many churches and funeral homes have separate rooms you can use for the funeral luncheon. With everyone participating in the events in one central location, there's no need for a funeral procession filled with cars wasting fuel. Consider hosting the graveside service after the luncheon, and limit the people invited to the graveside portion of the service to close friends and family. Carpool to the cemetery, or consider renting one limousine to transport everyone.
Talk to your funeral home director about other ways to go green, such as biodegradable caskets and urns, and do what you can to have a better impact on the environment while attending your loved one's funeral.