Many of the green disposable products sold in the U.S. are manufactured China, where the environmental standards are questionable at best.
The products are then shipped across the ocean to the US and sold here as “green.”
Most of these products end up in a landfill, simply because most cities in the US don’t have the infrastructure in place to property recycle or compost them.
Is it really green to buy a product produced in China, shipped across the ocean and dumped into a landfill?
If you are buying “green” disposable products, here are some questions to ask to determine if, in fact, you are buying a green product:
Where is the product produced?
What are the raw materials used to make the product?
What are the environmental conditions of the plant?
Are there any contaminants in the product?
How much energy has been used to manufacture and transport the product?
Is the product compostable or recyclable?
Where will the product be disposed?
What is the likelihood it will be disposed of properly?
If we truly want to make a difference for the environment we need to start looking more critically at the products we are using and how we are disposing of them.
As much as possible, we should be buying products that are domestically produced where the environmental standards are stronger. The products should also be either compostable or recyclable.
If we focus on building more recycling and composting facilities as well as the infrastructure to make sure the products are taken out of the waste stream, we will make real progress in going green.