Thursday, April 10, 2008

Top 10 UN-Green Products!

1. Disposable Products
Styrofoam, plastic cups and utensils are not biodegradable, which means it's here forever. Next time, get your coffee to go in a reusable coffee mug or thermos. Skip the fast food, and use glass and metal storage containers whenever possible.

2. Paper products
Properly managed, paper is a renewable resource. But many of us tend to use more paper products than necessary. Paper towels and napkins are particularly wasteful of forest resources, landfill space, and your money. If you do purchase paper towels or napkins, make sure you buy an eco-friendly variety. A better alternative is to use cloth napkins at meals, and rags, sponges, or towels to clean up messes.


3. Bleached coffee filters
Dioxins are chemicals formed during the chlorine bleaching process. Dioxins contaminate groundwater and air, and have been linked to cancer in both humans and animals. If you are a coffee drinker, make sure you buy eco-friendly unbleached filters, which are healthier for both you and the environment.


4. Product Packaging
How often do you buy products that are wrapped in layers of heavy plastic, bubble wrap, or mounds of packing peanuts? Excess packaging wastes resources and costs you more money. A large portion of the trash in American households comes from packaging, which contributes to our overflowing landfills. Whenever possible, buy products in bulk, without excess packaging.


5. Tropical hardwoods
Teak and mahogany are beautiful, long-lasting woods. Demand for these woods has increased their harvesting from tropical rainforests, where over half of the planet's plant and animal species reside. Help protect the rainforests. Next time you are in the market for wood furniture, make sure it's manufactured through certified forestry programs. Even better, consider purchasing products made from bamboo, a highly renewable resource that causes less damage to the environment.


6. Household cleaners
Many household cleaning products contain hazardous ingredients. Rather than purchasing products with scary warning labels, try to buy natural cleaners. They are better for your skin, your lungs, and your indoor environment. A clean home doesn't have to be an unhealthy one. Visit: Clean-Safely.com


7. High-octane gas
High-octane gas releases hazardous pollutants into the air and could be bad for your car. Today, only one in ten cars manufactured since 1982 requires high-octane gasoline. Try to use the lowest octane fuel recommended for your car.


8. Toys made with PVC plastic
PVC plastic, the least recycled plastic, is mainly used in construction. But it can also be found in everyday plastics, including children's toys. Vinyl chloride, the chemical used to make PVC, is a human carcinogen. Other dangerous additives, such as lead and cadmium, are sometimes added to PVC to keep it from breaking down. These additives are particularly dangerous in children's toys.


9. Incandescent bulbs
With relatively inexpensive compact fluorescent lightbulbs (CFLs) available, it makes no sense to buy old-style bulbs for most applications. CFLs don't radiate light the same way as conventional bulbs, but they use 75% less energy. Make sure you dispose of CFL lightbulbs properly, because they contain a small amount of mercury.


10. Disposable batteries
Most of the 15 billion batteries manufactured each year are alkaline batteries, which are discarded after their life cycle. Batteries that are thrown away and taken to landfills break down and leak chemicals into the groundwater. With so many electronic devices surrounding us, it makes environmental and financial sense to switch to rechargeable Nickel Metal Hydride (NiMH) or Lithium Ion (Li-Ion) batteries. Do your research on eco-friendly batteries; you'll limit the amount of toxins entering the groundwater, and save yourself some money.


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3 comments:

  1. How do you dispose of CFL lightbulbs properly?

    ReplyDelete
  2. Good question, I posted a blog entry about it recently here: CFL & Mercury Dangers

    You can save them in a safe place until the local hazardous waste drop off day that's at the firestation in the cape.

    Go to http://earth911.org/ for more info on hazardous waste disposal.

    ReplyDelete
  3. I'd love for you to share a link to this post on my blog (http://www.goodiesformom.com) under my post "Share Your Thoughts for a Greener World". We are having an Earth Day Celebration through 4/22 trying to help bring green to everyday people. This would be a great addition.

    Lois

    ReplyDelete

So whaddaya think?

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