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beck
oooh i haven't had a holiday in so long, i would be tempted. but good on you for being principled. can you just explain the environmental reasons you are not keen so she knows it's not personal? i'm trying to cut my carbon footprint and we are switching to holidays in the UK and Europe so we can use trains instead of flying - I'm aiming for no more short-haul and minimal long-haul flights but there are so many places i want to visit i don't think i could say never...but hey, baby steps. i calculated my carbon footprint though and it was pretty good.

i'm with you on the cars, i have a licence but have never driven since i passed my test. London is not a car city (car drivers pay £8 congestion charge - and they are going to increase it to £25 for big gas guzzlers hahaha - it makes me so mad seeing one tiny child being ferried to school in a giant car the size of a tank) and parking is super expensive. We have great public transport and and all the shops I need are within walking distance or on the bus or tube. My food shops and pharmacy for my cleaning refills are within 5 mins walk of my house, v cool.

i occasionally take a cab, like if i have bought a big item of furniture too big to carry or done a bumper grocery shop, but i love not needing to drive. my friends think that once i have the baby we'll get a car, i'm not. i just won't buy tons and tons of baby junk.
dusty
I thought that article was a bit odd, and it did make me wonder how car centric the US is. My video store is two blocks away. I walk it. I don't think it would save on energy if my dvds arrived at my door by mail (ie. by plane and then truck, no?), but I guess energy conservation is full of surprises.

I am actually terrified of flying, so when I went to the climate change conference last year, I could act all self-righteous about taking a 12 hour train ride instead of a one-hour flight.

One of the speakers at the conference talked about how on the one hand, everyone in Manhattan takes public transit, but on the other hand, there is still so much traffic that for deliveries, trucks have to go around and around the block to find somewhere to park and it eats up huge amounts of fuel.
beck
i had a little epiphany watching crap tv - i had never figured out why the grocery bags on american shows don't have handles - and then i realised - because nobody is carrying them further than from the car to their door! the little light went on in my brain...
tankgirl
I'm not sure whether i think it's cool or not that Walgreen's regularly stocks 7th generation cleaning products and paper goods.
vegangel
QUOTE(tankgirl @ Mar 12 2008, 12:47 AM) *
I'm not sure whether i think it's cool or not that Walgreen's regularly stocks 7th generation cleaning products and paper goods.


I think we should be happy that places such as Walgreens feel pressured enough by the presence of "green" consumers to stock these products. Not to mention, not everyone has access to the Whole Foods in their town, where as Walgreens is much more accessible to a larger demographic, making green less elite and more "street."
tesao
could someone tell me why The Body Shop is considered to be so bad? i know that they are a huge company and have some huge number of shops in another huge number of countries, so they could be an evil empire? i really love their products and am starting to feel guilty for using them...but it would be nice to know why.

i know that hydrogenated oil is used in some of the products...but if you aren't eating them, why is that bad?

muito thank you!
pepper
tes, they aren't evil like nestle is, they just use garbage ingredients that aren't great for you or the planet and Massive amounts of packaging in their stores. same as any other big name really. better than loreal but not as good as something natural which they just aren't really at all.
if you like their stuff, use it, it's not going to kill you or anything! but not the lip stuff, it has the hydrogenated oil in it and you are actually eating that slowly. sadly there just isn't any safe consumable level of that at all.
vegangel
QUOTE(tesao @ Mar 29 2008, 02:52 AM) *
could someone tell me why The Body Shop is considered to be so bad? i know that they are a huge company and have some huge number of shops in another huge number of countries, so they could be an evil empire? i really love their products and am starting to feel guilty for using them...but it would be nice to know why.

i know that hydrogenated oil is used in some of the products...but if you aren't eating them, why is that bad?

muito thank you!


You've got the right idea--hydrogenated oils aren't good for your insides. Here's my advice: If you are passionate about something (the environment, your health, fair trade...), do your homework--research the companies you plan to invest in regularly (aka, shop at). You don't have to be totally ascetic-- but make sure you can live with your choices and you are making educated decisions.

Not everyone has time to make their own cosmetics, and not everyone is comfortable going "product free." But everyone (at least everyone posting here!) does have time to write an e-mail or make a phone call to a company asking them the hard questions and demanding answers. Those who want to complain about a company can write to the CEO and tell them why they are unhappy. One call/letter gets an eyeabrow raised. Ten get a thoughtful pause. 100 get to the CEO's desk. Get the idea? If you're going to shop, you may as well vote with your dollars.
erinjane
Has anyone tried going 'no-poo'? As in no shampoo or conditioner? My hair is so fine, thin, and straight that I can't do anything with it. It doesn't hold a hairstyle and I can't put any kind of product in because it makes it look greasy and really weighs it down. So a few days ago I heard about the no shampoo thing and I thought 'what have I got to lose' AND i get to cut down on chemical-laden hair products. I'm on day 2. Has anyone else tried cutting them out? I'm trying baking soda as a wash and apple cider vinnegar as a rinse. I expected my hair to be a lot greasier but so far it doesn't look too bad. They say there's an adjustment period. I think tomorrow I'm going to try rinsing with chamomile tea instead because I heard it's less oily than ACV.
faerietails2
yeah, i just heard read about that baking soda/apple cider mix in the latest issue of bust. sounds pretty cool, actually. i'll have to give it a try sometime.

i'm giving up shampoo bottles and switching to all-natural shampoo bars. i just got my stuff in the mail today, actually (i got the cafe moreno shampoo and some other body soaps). can't wait to try them out. my hair always feels so fried and dried out after i shower. hopefully this will help.
tesao
those shampoo soap bars look great! let us know how you like them.

muito thank you to pepper and vegangel for the explanations. there IS too much packaging in almost everything. *sigh*

i only buy products that haven't been tested on animals. it's doubly hard to do that and still be green.
lunia666
Going green in the home
Who has the better brand I have been using mostly Method products but is there something better ?
erinjane
I think I'll try those shampoo bars for now. I want to keep going with the baking soda and vinegar but because I'm going on a 2 month back packing trip in a few weeks I don't think now is the time for it. I'll definitely be trying it full force when I get home in July though. I ended up washing my hair with shampoo today because the AVC made it tooooo greasy. This week I'm going to try and alternate between the two and see how that goes.
vegangel
QUOTE(lunia666 @ Mar 30 2008, 12:31 PM) *
Going green in the home
Who has the better brand I have been using mostly Method products but is there something better ?


I think Seventh Generation is the bee's knees! Their CEO really has his head and heart in the same place and the company not only makes green products, but gives back bigtime--for example, for the last two summers (and the one to come) they sent/will send approx. 200 college students on full scholarship for a one-week training in environmental leadership with Greenpeace. The program is called "ChangeIt!"

Ms. Meyer's Clean Day has great products and some awesome scents but is a bit pricey (you pay for the cute labels, I'm sure).

Method isn't bad either! They just look more mainstream b/c they believe green products should still be 'stylish.' The two guys that run Method just released a book called "Squeaky Green" that you might want to check out.

Lastly, but most importantly, making your own non-toxic green cleaners is easy, requires virtually no packaging or transportation, is easy on your wallet, and you can customize the scents with essential oils. Let me know if you need recipes/ideas.
saralicious
I commend you all for the choices you’ve made to become a little or a lot more green! I have a bit of a different perspective, here’s my 2 cents:

Last year I moved from Vancouver to a resource-based town in northern British Columbia, and wow, what a culture shock. In Vancouver I’d get pissy when people would want their groceries double-bagged at the store I worked at. But here, people leave their trucks running all day/night (sometimes it gets so cold they won’t start), and there literally aren’t sidewalks on many streets. I actually just had a roommate who didn’t know which things were recyclable or not, because she’s from a town without a recycling program. Everything went in the garbage: paper, water bottles, glass, you name it. There just isn’t the infrastructure and programs in place to do the things that may be second nature to people living in larger cities.

I’m fortunate enough to live within walking distance to a lot of stores, but I wouldn’t be able to get around here without a vehicle. Unfortunately, a lot of “eco-friendly” choices just aren’t realistic in small towns. I’ve had to get back to the basics; recycling, using reusable grocery bags, plus I love the Seventh Generation products, by the way. But it’s really easy to get discouraged when it feels like only a handful of people in the whole town give a crap (I've never seen so much litter in my entire life!). Plus I work in forestry, so that opens a whole other set of eco-dilemmas!
damona
it's been so cold and wet and miserable here this winter that i haven't been able to do much walking, but it's getting nice now, so it's gonna be back to pounding the pavement for dr appts and small grocery trips. i give each of my kids a back pack when we go to the store,as well as me and the mr, and we cram as much as we can in each one! so, you figure, six backpacks full of groceries is just about enough for a week, depending on what you get. the only time i use the car for summertime shopping is when i know i'm getting a lot of canned goods or cases of stuff. other than that,

i do my best to recycle, but we really only do paper products here (apartment). and my kids collect pop cans for the cash.

for a long time we used seventh generation diapers and wipes because of my kids extra sensitive skin, but no place round here carries them and i can't afford to order them anymore. besides, they don't have any kind of pull-ups type diapers. i called to ask about that and i got a rather snotty response about how there "wasn't enough interest so i should try lined cloth undies" which is a lovely idea, but wasn't practical at the time. but i do like their laundry stuff.

something that bugs me though, is how much stuff is aimed at rich people. or, at least, people with considerably more disposable income than what i have! and i know that there's stuff i can make at home, but i don't always have time for it. not yo mention, organic stuff is ridiculously priced, but i spend the money on it in hopes that growers will realize that ther is more demand for it than "traditional" stuff.

anyway. kind of a random rant, sorry.

vegangel
If you are really interested in green businesses from the businesses perspective (ie. why they do the things they do) with stoneyfield farms as a prime example, you should read "Stirring It Up: Making Money and Saving the World" by Gary Hirshberg, the Ce-Yo of Stoneyfield Farms. It's interesting because he goes "inside" the philosophy of several different companies such as Patagonia and Whole Foods. He also tells about how most of these companies startes with grassroots efforts and have turned down some amount of profit in the name of ecological and social sustainability. I know if you don't have time to make your own products you probably don't have time to read, but if you get a chance, pick it up at your public library--I did, and it's free (well, your tax dollars are already paying for it.
lunia666
Does anybody know about recycling plastic . I have been saving every thing from plastic pill bottles,milk jugs,everything plastic in general . Also am confused about paper like paper boxes frozen food comes in can they be recycled. This weekend I took my bf old t-shirts ( mostly band shirts) he was going to throw away and kid of DIY them so I can wear them . I couple of them turned out really cute a few I might sleep in wear around the house. I have been using either Method are SG products around the house. I found SG products at Target a lot cheaper then at my local grocery store. the only thing I dislike so far is the tub cleaner. On a diff subject I stared buying Organic milk I was shocked how long it lasted. Regular milk I have to throw away before are on the exp date because the taste changes so much. Last week I noticed is was over 2 days past the exp date but still tasted great.
pepper
if your want the low-down contact the city and have them send you out a recycling guide. most places have them and tehy list every and all the things you can and can't put in yoru recycling box. many people just dump whatever they want in there without checking first and it creates more work for the recycling plant.

for tub cleaner i use plain old baking soda maybe a squirt of an all purpose cleaner (i like dr bronner's castile soap, the tea tree oil or peppermint are nice disinfectants). i use one of those green scrubbies and get the cleanest bathtub ever. works great.
that's pretty much what i use all over the house for everything, what's the point of a different cleaner for each job? too much trouble for me.

lunia, if you google threadbangers they have a pretty cool podcast of recon projects. i just saw one about resizing tshirts but i think it was anotehr site. that one has tons of great stuff though.
dusty
I always seem to have body wash sitting around that I hate the smell of. I use that with baking soda to clean the bathtub.
tankgirl
maybe this should be in the confessions thread but I just want to say that I am moving and trying to get rid of almost everything I own and I'm going to be really sad when I have to actually "throw out" the stuff I am practically trying to give away on craigslist that are totally usable. On the plus side, I donated a shit load of clothes to planet aid instead of throwing them out and hopefully next trash day people will take shit off the curb before the big bad trash men take everything away. Man I have never felt so ungreen in my life sad.gif

I also use SG cleaner and use only that for everything, all purpose cleaner/bath/floors/pets everything. I can't live without the green scrubby things as well, they can scrub through anything and last a long time.
lilacwine13
Tankgirl, is it possible to donate your unsold items to Goodwill or some other secondhand store? That's what I did with a bunch of stuff I can't take with me and I didn't want to store. I think I donated three big bags of used goods.

I still ending up throwing out a bunch of stuff (mainly things that were too worn out or broken) and yes, it does suck. sad.gif I couldn't figure out how to reuse the stuff, nor do I have the tools to do so.

tankgirl
yah its pretty hard for me because I don't drive as far as getting things to good will or salv army. But I do have a clothing drop off for planet aid 2 blocks away which is how I'm donating all of my clothes. Maybe salv would do a pick up if I had enough valuable stuff, hmm...
pepper
sure, lots of places do pick ups. if you check out the thrift stores in the yellow pages i'm pretty sure you'll find someone who will come and pick up even if it's not a ton of stuff.
damona
tankgirl, i have discovered freecycle. it's my new best friend. here's the site they have local groups for just about everywhere.

is there a greener substitute for good old bleach? cuz i feel guilty every time i use bleach, but i get tired of ucky stains on stuff. and is there a good green detergent to use with a new, HE, front loading washer?
tankgirl
wow freecycle is the best website ever for this, thank you so much for your suggestion! I hope I hope people take my stuffs!
starshine
QUOTE(damona @ Apr 23 2008, 11:31 AM) *
and is there a good green detergent to use with a new, HE, front loading washer?[/color]


Seventh Generation makes one that I love.
pepper
the canadian government is trying to make dandelion and blueberries illegal substances.
no joke, check it out.
pepper
the canadian government is trying to make dandelion and blueberries illegal substances.
no joke, check it out.
damona
wow, pepper, that is so fucked up it is beyond words. what is wrong with people????
culturehandy
In my intrawebs travels, I was referred to this article.
freckleface7
= bump=


my city starts mandatory curbside recycling in a few days.. YAH!! ( & about time)

have any of you tried this?

www.mycarbonfootprint.com

we came out as a good bit under the US average, but still way way over the worldwide average (of about 4 I think). I had to guess on some stuff, bc they didn't have my make of car listed.. it's old but gets good milage so I think that's more of a + ?

interesting stuff.


ps: have any of you encountered any weirdness when you use your carry w/ you shopping bags?
like, if the clerk seems put out (I've nearly forgotten & had to ask them to re-bag into my own bag, and always apologise) what do you say to them?
beck
i did a similar one for us last year, and we came out as pretty low - but the really striking thing for me was that almost half of our household footprint was from flights we took that year (London-Canada). it was a real wake-up call for me as we are pretty green day-to-day, we don't have a car, recycle almost everything, have a small flat that is efficiently heated etc, but just one long-haul flight was almost enough to double our footprint.

travel is a big thing for us, but i have since been organising holidays that we can do by train - lots of Europe is accessible by rail so it shouldn't be too hard. There are so many places in the world that i want to see (Argentina and Japan are first on the list) but i figure if we can cut flights down from every year to every 3 years that is a good start. And no more short-haul flights in the UK and Europe, even though they are annoyingly much cheaper than taking the train...

the other thing that affected ours was that our whole flat is lit with spotlights, which i think are harder to substitute energy-efficient lightbulbs. any advice on that? i can't afford to get rid of them all (which would leave approximately 40 holes in the ceilings!) but thought that i could get lots of lamps that take energy-efficient bulbs and try to use them rather than the overhead lights where possible.

people here are OK with the bag thing, my supermarket gives extra loyalty points for re-using bags. but i do sometimes feel bad for saying no to them, customer service is kind of a new concept here wink.gif so i hate to discourage the cashiers from being helpful and packing stuff (rather than just slinging it onto the counter).
erinjane
freckle, using your own bags here is pretty common now so we don't get weird looks really. The only time its happened was when we went to Wal-Mart (cheapest cat food). The woman at the till just kept saying, "really? You don't need any bags...? You're serious now...?" It was really funny. But normally I try to steer clear of those kinds of places.
deschatsrouge
*barge*

I think not shopping at wal-mart is it self an act of greeness.
auralpoison
I guess it really isn't easy to be green.
auralpoison
How green is your green?

I agree that Walmart sucks . . . but. Our local super Walmart is where most of the outside rural communities shop. My auntie drove in thirty odd miles yesterday to buy groceries because there isn't a local grocery where she lives because, well, it got run out by Walmart. There are four other markets, one really expensive Kroger & two stores that stock mostly products for the Mexican Nationals. So Walmart is it for your average redneck on a budget.
stargazer
AP, what a great point about the difference socioeconimics and class has to do with markets available to the american public. while i currently live in a blue state, it is a highly, ideological, white, upper class state. no wonder there are whole food and trader joe markets available all over. choice is available if you have money. rural, underprivileged folks have to get what they can get....wal mart, whatever major corporate market is in your area. i think people forget this point sometimes when they encourage people to boycott some markets. great point indeed AP.
freckleface7
= bump=

tomorrow I am going to place to order for the installation of our new laminate flooring at home depot..
yes it's a laminate but it's a "healthier" version of it.. less toxin's or something; I can't find where it says that in the website but it's a slightly better choice regardless.

why I'm posting here though is: I'm buying No VoC paint for the foyer!!
I'm so dorkishly excited about this! rolleyes.gif
home depot sells a brand called Fresh Aire Choice and I am hoping hard I can get in in exactly the color I found on another paint chip. naively I had not realised til I went to the website that it's limited in color scope but there is one similar so.. maybe?
it has a lifetime warranty too, so another plus.

has anyone painted w/ a low/no VoC before? I am itching to get started!
hoosierman78
QUOTE(freckleface7 @ Oct 30 2008, 01:22 AM) *
= bump=

tomorrow I am going to place to order for the installation of our new laminate flooring at home depot..
yes it's a laminate but it's a "healthier" version of it.. less toxin's or something; I can't find where it says that in the website but it's a slightly better choice regardless.

why I'm posting here though is: I'm buying No VoC paint for the foyer!!
I'm so dorkishly excited about this! rolleyes.gif
home depot sells a brand called Fresh Aire Choice and I am hoping hard I can get in in exactly the color I found on another paint chip. naively I had not realised til I went to the website that it's limited in color scope but there is one similar so.. maybe?
it has a lifetime warranty too, so another plus.

has anyone painted w/ a low/no VoC before? I am itching to get started!



Congrats on the 'green flooring'. Just as an fyi, what you want to look for in composite wood systems is they are free from urea-formaldehyde resins. It should be labeled as such.

With the paint, I have not personally used it, but I have specified it for numerous commercial projects the last couple years, and have had no comments (in my work, no news means their happy, clients only call to complain when things don't work). I don't know what stores you have available, but pretty much every major paint manufacturer sells a low VOC paint these days (Green Seal Standard GS-11). Sherwin-Williams Harmony is a zero VOC paint, and I believe is available in all 1500 of their colors.

Did you find that these items were any more/less expensive than 'standard' items? From a commercial level, I've found that the prices are nearly identical and I haven't priced home products lately.
freckleface7
QUOTE(hoosierman78 @ Oct 30 2008, 09:12 AM) *
Congrats on the 'green flooring'. Just as an fyi, what you want to look for in composite wood systems is they are free from urea-formaldehyde resins. It should be labeled as such.

With the paint, I have not personally used it, but I have specified it for numerous commercial projects the last couple years, and have had no comments (in my work, no news means their happy, clients only call to complain when things don't work). I don't know what stores you have available, but pretty much every major paint manufacturer sells a low VOC paint these days (Green Seal Standard GS-11). Sherwin-Williams Harmony is a zero VOC paint, and I believe is available in all 1500 of their colors.

Did you find that these items were any more/less expensive than 'standard' items? From a commercial level, I've found that the prices are nearly identical and I haven't priced home products lately.


ok, just got back from home depot and I have to say I was rather shocked at how expensive the paint was..
$ 38.95 a gallon. (that Is expensive yes? I looked at Behr paints in eggshell & they were only $20-something a gallon) however- I was determined to do the Green thing.

the color choices were Very limited. they only had about 25 or so total options & no custom tinting-- there are 2 Bases and the color is added via silver packets that are opened to reveal a clear packet & then the whole thing is put in the paint & it's shaken & a few minutes later..voila.

however, the color I chose, a soft neutral light yellow (Daffodil Delight -my fav flower) looks to be a better choice than the color chip I had to start w/, and in a minute I'm getting ready to start painting so I'll let you know.

I kind of wish I had thought about Sherwin Willams or the like for eco-friendly if they are cheaper, bc it def is a deterent to going green when it costs so much more $.
however- we still have the whole upstairs of our house to do in time so... !


ps: how is the weather there Hooiser? I heard they already had *snow* in my hometown of LaPorte!
hoosierman78
QUOTE(freckleface7 @ Oct 30 2008, 07:41 PM) *
ok, just got back from home depot and I have to say I was rather shocked at how expensive the paint was..
$ 38.95 a gallon. (that Is expensive yes? I looked at Behr paints in eggshell & they were only $20-something a gallon) however- I was determined to do the Green thing.

the color choices were Very limited. they only had about 25 or so total options & no custom tinting-- there are 2 Bases and the color is added via silver packets that are opened to reveal a clear packet & then the whole thing is put in the paint & it's shaken & a few minutes later..voila.

however, the color I chose, a soft neutral light yellow (Daffodil Delight -my fav flower) looks to be a better choice than the color chip I had to start w/, and in a minute I'm getting ready to start painting so I'll let you know.

I kind of wish I had thought about Sherwin Willams or the like for eco-friendly if they are cheaper, bc it def is a deterent to going green when it costs so much more $.
however- we still have the whole upstairs of our house to do in time so... !
ps: how is the weather there Hooiser? I heard they already had *snow* in my hometown of LaPorte!


Damn, I had no idea it was that much more. I understand the going green though, and in time the pricing should come down. I know it has on a lot of other items like flooring, certified wood & ozone friendly refrigerants. You will be very happy with the paint though, at least from an odor standpoint. The last building I looked at with 'green' paint had been painted the day before, and there was absolutely no paint smell at all, it was amazing really.

I don't know if the sticker price is cheaper at SW, but you can get a 15% discount online to take into the store.

If the work upstairs requires any lumber, you can get FSC Certified, which means that it was grown & harvested in a responsible manner rather than just being a product of clear cutting. It is usually somewhat more local as well, but that also can depend on your location. You will probably have to go to an actual lumber yard for it though, and like all other things green, it is a little more expensive.

The weather here is beautiful today, but then again I'm about 7 hours south of LaPorte. I was in Lafayette this weekend, and it was pretty damn cold. No snow, but I had to bust out the gloves and heavy coat Saturday night. I had heard that the whole northwest corner of the state got a nice blast of lake effect snow, which doesn't really sound like much fun. I like winter and all, I just prefer it come a little later in the year.
freckleface7
hoosierman: I was reading the Warranty for the flooring & it's got a GreenGuard* Indoor Air Quality Certified
sort of stamp printed on it, but am not sure exactly what that means. can you shed any light on it for me?

we're still waiting for Installation from HD and am not finished w/ the {never-ending} painting yet anyway, but I am liking very much the no voc paint. seems it feels just a touch thinner than regular paints so 2 coats (+ over-spots too) have been an absolute neccessity, but as far as smell, color, etc, I am very pleased.
hoosierman78
QUOTE(freckleface7 @ Nov 5 2008, 11:14 PM) *
hoosierman: I was reading the Warranty for the flooring & it's got a GreenGuard* Indoor Air Quality Certified
sort of stamp printed on it, but am not sure exactly what that means. can you shed any light on it for me?

we're still waiting for Installation from HD and am not finished w/ the {never-ending} painting yet anyway, but I am liking very much the no voc paint. seems it feels just a touch thinner than regular paints so 2 coats (+ over-spots too) have been an absolute neccessity, but as far as smell, color, etc, I am very pleased.


Greenguard Environmental Institute is an independent, non profit organization that tests the off-gassing of interior finishings & furniture. Basically, manufacturers pay GEI to test their products, and if they emit VOC's at a level lower than GEI specifies, they get the stamp. I know for commercial buildings, Greenguard certification is required if you plan on getting LEED points for flooring, furniture, etc.

They also have an online product guide at www.greenguard.org.

I don't know if the flooring you bought is installed as floating, nail down, or uses adhesive to secure it to the subfloor, but if it uses adhesive, make sure they use a low-VOC adhesive, otherwise you will get the off-gassing from the glue, and won't be able to tell that the flooring is low-VOC.

I have heard that 2 coats is the norm, which makes it even more expensive than it already is, but like you said, finishing painting a room and not having it smell like it's freshly painted is very satisfying.
freckleface7
I believe the flooring is the kind the fits together & floats, so in terms of eco-friendly along w/ the Green-Guard, that's all good yes? I mean, I know it's still a laminate, but w/in that, I did try to make better choices. (that & our subflooring I do not doubt would be a bear to even out for the others, lol).

I will check out the GreenGuard website later today, once we (the mr is on Leave & helping) get more painting done.

you have no idea how helpful you are being to me on this.. I'm such a novice at this whole green this but am trying to make progressively wiser choices whenever possible.

what is LEED points for flooring though?

and hey- if you are a builder/carpenter(?) in IN, I wonder if you have ever run across my {favorite} uncle.. he's a Master Craftsman & quite a character. if you two are even remotely in the same line of work, I cannot fathom you having at not least heard his name, though possibly not in the most favorable light! laugh.gif
hoosierman78
QUOTE(freckleface7 @ Nov 6 2008, 04:16 PM) *
I believe the flooring is the kind the fits together & floats, so in terms of eco-friendly along w/ the Green-Guard, that's all good yes? I mean, I know it's still a laminate, but w/in that, I did try to make better choices. (that & our subflooring I do not doubt would be a bear to even out for the others, lol).

I will check out the GreenGuard website later today, once we (the mr is on Leave & helping) get more painting done.

you have no idea how helpful you are being to me on this.. I'm such a novice at this whole green this but am trying to make progressively wiser choices whenever possible.

what is LEED points for flooring though?

and hey- if you are a builder/carpenter(?) in IN, I wonder if you have ever run across my {favorite} uncle.. he's a Master Craftsman & quite a character. if you two are even remotely in the same line of work, I cannot fathom you having at not least heard his name, though possibly not in the most favorable light! laugh.gif


Yes, that's all good. Even as a laminate, it means that the adhesive they used to bond the layers is an eco-friendly, low-VOC adhesive, so given it probably uses less actual wood than a true hardwood floor, it could very well be better for the environment, regardless of it being a laminate. That, however, would be nearly impossible to tell:-)

Glad I can help. There are so many pitfalls and 'green-washing' out there as people try to make a buck off the green movement, that it can get very confusing. Looking for the certifications from independent sources (such as Greenguard) is your best bet, but if you have questions along the way, I'm more than happy to help if I can. I do work mostly in the commercial sector, so some residential materials aren't as familiar to me, but if nothing else I'll try and point you to a good resource to find things:-) One very simple thing is to buy from local manufacturers. Even if the product itself isn't quite as green as something available, there's a lot to be said for not having to ship it across the country/world.

LEED is a rating system put together by the United States Green Building Council (USGBC). They now have a residential rating system as well. Basically, you get points for different sustainable features you build into a new building. They rate the site, water consumption, energy consumption, indoor air quality (this is where the low-VOC comes into play), etc. When you add up your points, you see what level of sustainability you have achieved with your building, from not certified up to platinum. If applied correctly, a high level of sustainability can be achieved.

Actually, I am a mechanical engineer. I design & specify heating/cooling systems for commercial & industrial clients. I happen to be a licensed professional engineer and LEED Accredited Professional (which is how I have become so familiar with sustainable products). If you ever go to replace your furnace/air conditioner, I am more than happy to provide efficient, environmentally friendly brands. I can also give you some pointers on selecting a contractor. I may very well know him if he's from the southwest end of the state. True craftsmen are few and far between any more, and those that do exceptional work are in high demand. Small world after all, isn't it.
tankgirl
I'm not sure where this goes, so I guess I'll ask here.

My grandparents sent me a quilt and it is like a comforter and it has wool in it or something. Obviously nothing I would buy new, so I'm not sure how to care for it. It says it is dry clean only, which means crazy chemicals I don't want to deal with, esp sleep with, I also don't want to pay to have it dry cleaned. Anyway, it's a bit musty, kinda stained and I was looking for some advice on how to clean it. I know that there are these at home dry cleaning kits available, but this thing is hefty, and those things also contain a bunch of unwanted chemicals I'm guessing. Any ideas for freshening it up naturally? I don't want to wash it, because like I said, it's filled with wool and the stuffing will probably shrink.

P.S. I can't believe this thread has been barren for this long!
vixen_within
Excuse my ignorance, but what's wrong with wool?


edit: doh! i see, you were asking about cleaning it!
i would guess that it's okay to spot clean it and perhaps wash in cold water, as long as you don't put it in the dryer. the best freshener is fresh air, if you live somewhere that you can hang it outside.
pepper
there is eco-friendly drycleaning. it costs more but really, it's worth it considering all the work involved in hand washing such a large item.
good luck!!
ketto
I did a quick internet search and came up with these suggestions:

http://www.hgtv.com/crafting/washing-quilt...ting/index.html

QUOTE
# Wash quilts filled with wool batts only in cold water using neutral pH soap.
# Soak wool batt quilts in a large sink or bathtub filled with enough water to cover the quilt.
# Gently squeeze the fabric with your hands. Do not agitate the quilt—agitation and rubbing wool fibers causes felting, which is an irreversible process.
# After washing the quilt, frequent rinsing may be necessary to remove the soap residue.
# To extract excess water, place the quilt in the washing machine on the spin cycle only.
# Line dry only.
Caution: Do not dry a quilt with wool batting in an automatic dryer.


http://ths.gardenweb.com/faq/lists/quilt/2...5225014281.html
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