Propose Responsibly – Part One

Posted on January 29, 2008 by Allie

No, I’m not talking about making sure you don’t pull a drunken “will you marry me?” at five AM in Vegas.  If you want to get married by Elvis, more power to you.  I’m talking about what you propose with.

We’re coming up on Valentine’s Day and since lots of people chose 2/14 to propose, I thought it might be a good idea to talk about engagement rings.

The gold and diamond industries are incredibly destructive to people and the environment.  Today we’ll talk about gold, and tomorrow we’ll talk about diamonds.

According to No Dirty Gold, a website by Earthworks and Oxfam, “the production of one gold ring produces 20 tons of mine waste.”   In addition to the harm to the environment, gold mining displaces people, pollutes drinking water, destroys landscapes, changes the traditions of communities, and can create violence and human rights issues.  Kind of takes the romance out of a ring, doesn’t it?

So what can you do?  Buy old gold or buy recycled gold.  Check out antique stores or talk to family members to see if there’s a family ring that can be passed on.  Or look for jewelers like GreenKarat who make jewelery from recycled metals.

GreenKarat accepts old jewelry in exchange for store credit and even has a registry where family members can donate old gold to help you build your wedding or engagement rings.

An engagement ring is all about meaning and symbolism.  What do you want yours to say?

No Comments +

  1. That is a great picture. But I’m so the wrong person to have any opinion on marriage. At this point, I’d be happy for vows said over a life saver candy as long as someone really meant them.

    January 29th, 2008 at 6:52 pm
    Comment by Noelle
  2. That’s the thing, it’s about the meaning, not the object. And Lifesavers dissolve, so I’m thinking they’re fairly eco-friendly. :)

    January 29th, 2008 at 7:42 pm
    Comment by Allie
  3. But I like shiny things!

    Actually, I’ve never, not once in my life, noticed a ring on someone’s hand. Unless, of course, it was a Mr. T-style assortment.

    January 29th, 2008 at 10:16 pm
    Comment by mickey
  4. Well, how can you not notice a Mr. T array of rings, really? I was going to make a ‘pity the fool’ joke, but I’ll spare you. This time.

    January 30th, 2008 at 9:20 pm
    Comment by Allie
  5. [...] to think about getting married, you may be interested in previous posts on eco-friendly engagements here and here. Invitations set the tone for your event, so choosing recycled invitations is a great way [...]

    May 5th, 2008 at 12:14 pm
    Pingback by Allie’s Answers » Blog Archive » Tip of the Day - Eco-Friendly Weddings: Invitations

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Tip of the Day

If It Doesn’t Smell, Don’t Wash It


According to Real Simple, if every American made an effort to launder less — cutting out just one load of laundry a week per household — we’d save enough water to fill seven million swimming pools each year.

So if it looks clean, and it smells clean, call it clean and wear it again. Consider hanging worn clothes out on your clothesline to freshen them up between wearings.

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