Archive for December, 2009

Squeaky Green

Posted in Being Green on December 15th, 2009 by Lacey – 3 Comments

I recently ran out of my regular detergent (Kirkland’s Environmentally Friendly Laundry Detergent) and purchased Method‘s Squeaky Green, a 3x concentrated laundry soap that promised me a “plant-based formula tough on stains, easy on clothes and gentle on the planet.” 64 loads for $14.99 isn’t wonderful, but I’ll try nearly anything that promises such greatness. That, and I’ve been happy with other Method products that I’ve tried.

Let me back up a minute and say that I am a fan of the no-scent detergent. I also don’t like not really knowing what goes into my soaps, so for a while my husband, Myk, and I made our own laundry detergent until I just gave up. I didn’t find our clothes to be cleaner (they actually weren’t really getting as clean as with regular detergent…and with a kid, I want those clothes CLEAN), I hated chopping up bar soap in my food processor, Myk thought I was a big hippie, it was messy, and if you get the borax and the Ivory mixed up well…you’re screwed (they’re both white, after all). After an incident where my mom accidentally mixed the two, I threw it all out.

When it comes to scent, this stuff just smells like plain ol’ soap, nothin’ fancy. I can live with that.

Method conveniently also makes dryer sheets so you vegetarians/vegans out there don’t have to feel guilty about the animal fats often used in other conventional dryer sheets. Gross, I know, but knowledge is key to making the right decisions. What do you think?

Palm oil

Posted in Being Green on December 15th, 2009 by Lacey – 1 Comment
His home is threatened by deforestation thanks to renegade palm oil operations

His home is threatened by deforestation thanks to some palm oil operations

The other day I tweeted about how palm oil contributes to the destruction of the rainforests. I only realized this after doing some websurfing and eventually landing on a Wikipedia entry about palm oil’s environmental impact. Well, I have since been informed that this is true, but that had I done a little more research, I would have discovered that there are several forces out there working towards providing certification of palm oil as a sustainable resource. Some links:

The Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil provides a type of certification for palm oil and companies can go through RSPO to acquire sustainably-produced oil. From their website:

In response to the urgent and pressing global call for sustainably produced palm oil, the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO) was formed in 2004 with the objective of promoting the growth and use of sustainable oil palm products through credible global standards and engagement of stakeholders.

Interestingly, according to a few of the articles mentioned above, only 1% of the Certified Sustainable Palm Oil (CSPO) has been purchased.  My uneducated guess about that is likely cost.

On a slight tangent, I thought this article was interesting, saying that because palm oil is often found in biodiesel, we may be contributing to deforestation by using biodiesel fuel. Crazy, eh?

My takeaway is that I’m just going to look at ingredients and try to buy products that are made of sustainable ingredients. I’ll just have to do the best I can!

Thanks to my good friend Delara for pointing me in the right direction on this one!

Matt and Nat: vegan handbags

Posted in Being Green on December 10th, 2009 by Lacey – 3 Comments
The Royksopp

Although I consider myself more of an admirer of fine handbags rather than a user of fine handbags (I find them cost-prohibitive in our current state of…being middle class), I would totally buy a Matt and Nat handbag. I was in the parking garage at work the other day and saw a girl carrying a GORGEOUS black croc doctor-style handbag (something like this, this, or this, but none of those really do it justice) and…I kind of fell in love with the idea. When I did a search for vegan doctor-style handbag online, I somehow surfed to Matt and Nat’s site.  Then, I fell in love with Avril, Everest, and Royksopp.

From their website: In 1991, Co-owner and Creative Director Inder Bedi was challenged by a mahatma to go vegetarian for thirty days. It was during this time that Inder devised the business plan for an eco/vegan fashion house. First written as a university project in 1995 and eventually launched as MATT & NAT.

Another impressive quality to these bags? All linings are made from recycled water bottles. Consider a Matt and Nat bag added to my wishlist!

To compost or not to compost

Posted in Being Green on December 10th, 2009 by Lacey – Comments Off

Like that should even be a question!

I’ve been wanting to start a compost now for a few months but have had a hard time getting started. Indoor or outdoor? Buy one or make one? Household garbage or leaves? Is there a composter for both? I’ll be documenting the composting experience here as I stumble through it, but here is an awesome article on composting from No Impact Man.

Little Joy

Posted in Being Green on December 8th, 2009 by Lacey – 4 Comments

Maybe Little Joy Recycling will help me to stop moaning and groaning about how my homeowner’s association doesn’t care about initiating a recycling program. Currently we lug all our recycling to the Westpark Recycling Center but only after it sprawls across our back patio for about 3 or 4 weeks.  Not to knock Westpark, because it’s great, but you know, nothing really beats curbside.

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