Sustainable Wedding Alliance

Our Impact

It’s our mission to drive change and create a sustainable wedding industry, so it’s really important that we practice what we preach!

We act with integrity at all times, respect our planet and all that live on it.

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What are we doing about sustainability?

Sustainability is at the heart of everything that we do.  Our mission is to drive change to create a more sustainable wedding industry, raise awareness and tackle climate change and attitudes, by proactively encouraging businesses to develop future thinking strategies and make responsible decisions. We believe that we are trustees of this planet and it’s our duty to not only make sure it survives, but it thrives. We respect the planet in our care and all that lives on it.

As a purpose driven business, our values are such an important part of who we are and what we do. We act with integrity at all times | We respect our planet and all that live on it | We promote collaboration over competition | We are open and honest in our communication | We embrace change, new ideas and approaches | We are continuously learning and improving | We empower our communities, giving them the confidence and support they need to thrive.

We are passionate about upholding not only our responsibility for the environmental impact of weddings, but that of the industry as a whole. We are committed to taking meaningful action everyday to play our part in protecting our planet.

 
We are committed to being carbon neutral in our operations and consider sustainability in every aspect of our operations.

Being Carbon Neutral

In 2020 we made a commitment to be carbon neutral by the end 2021. We are delighted that we achieve this in 2021, and are on track to become net zero by 2030. In 2021 measured our carbon footprint as 3.61 tonnes CO2e (Scope 1, 2 and 3). The carbon that we have been unable to remove was then offset through our chosen partners, Ecologi. In December 2021, we set out new targets for the coming year as follows:

  • Travel to and from meetings and events in a hybrid vehicle and offset any mileage done using the petrol element of the vehicle. See our Sustainable Travel Policy for more info.
  • Avoid unnecessary travel by making use of video calls and conferencing, telephone and email. When using video conferencing software we consider the ethical merits of the provider
  • Offset any unavoidable emissions investing in carbon capture projects in the UK and worldwide, using Gold Standard credits
SME Climate Hub Logo
SME Climate Hub Logo

Zero Waste

In 2022, we’re proud to have achieved our target of sending zero waste to landfill. We have done this by:

  • Applying the waste hierarchy to all purchasing decisions – reducing the amount of waste we produce as a business, reusing and repurposing items, recycling, composting and as a last resort sending items for energy recovery
  • Eliminating single use plastic from the business

In 2023 our focus is on inspiring and educating businesses we work with to also remove single use plastic from their operations.

Building a sustainable business community

We are building a community of like-minded businesses across the wedding industry that share best practice, knowledge and work together. Are members embrace collaboration over competition. Our dedicated membership platform allows members to network with each other, share interests and work collaboratively to change our industry for the better.

In November 2021 we launched the Sustainable Wedding Alliance Scholarship, which give businesses that have been hit hard by the pandemic the opportunity to join the membership at a reduced cost for their first year. Inclusivity is important to us. We need to work together as a community to affect long-term sustainable change.

Supporting the change makers

We support organisations that are changing our planet for the better. Whether it’s signing a petition, speaking to our local MP or APPG, raising money for charity or planting trees, if it’s good for people and planet we’ll support it. Here are just a few of the organisations and causes which we’re proud to support.

Business Declares
We are proud to be joining Business Declares and the fast growing network of businesses who acknowledge the Climate and Ecological Emergency. Our aim is to reach Net Zero by 2030 by reducing our emissions and improving our impact on biodiversity. Concern for both people and the planet are not new to us and we look forward to continuing to share our journey and ensuring our voice is part of the collective, resounding call for change. We are certainly not claiming to be perfect, neither are we judging others, instead we are part of a coalition of the willing looking to collaborate and accelerate action while continuing to highlight the challenges and uncomfortable truths.

ClientEarth
An environmental charity with a unique approach, working in partnership across borders, systems and sectors, using the law to fight climate change, tackle pollution, defend wildlife and protect people and planet.

They believe the law is the most powerful tool we have in the fight to protect life on earth, and have proved its impact to tackle global challenges, changing the face of global environmental action. In 2017, they were named the ‘UK’s most effective environmental organisation’ by the Environmental Funders Network.

Restoring our planet, together

We contribute towards tree planting and carbon offsetting projects across the world through Ecologi, as well as offsetting any all business carbon emissions annually.

If you’d like to start your own forest, use our referral link and Ecologi will plant trees in both our forests (how nice of them)!

In addition we also plant trees in the UK for all new members with the Forest Future Company adding to the positive impact a company makes towards reversing climate change. All the trees we plant are native broadleaf species as part of the sustainable reforestation of the UK – always planting the right tree, in the right place.

Shared responsibility

The Alliance is a collective of environmentally conscious businesses all working together to reduce the impact our industry has on our planet.  As a community we are leading the change towards to a more sustainable future for the wedding industry. Our focus is on developing tools to help companies make their business more environmentally conscious, educate their clients on what sustainability means for them, and promote sustainable businesses far and wide.

On our way to becoming a B-Corp

We have made a commitment to gain B-Corp accreditation by 2025 and are in the process of completing our B-Impact Assessment; the tool to measure our impact on our team, community, the environment and our members. Although there is a lot to do, we’re really excited about what we will learn during this process and look forward to sharing it with you. 

Why should your business be sustainable?

Being sustainable isn’t just about reducing waste or energy consumption, it flows through everything we do, in our businesses and in the weddings, we produce.

The most common thing we hear when talking to business owners is that they want to be more sustainable, but just don’t know where to start. There is so much in the media about being green, but in reality, it can be a little overwhelming.