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Posts tagged ‘environment’

Real or Artificial Tree?

Americans have mixed opinions about real and artificial Christmas trees, and everyone has an opinion.

Here’s a comparison of both kinds of trees – with the pros of each – to help you decide:

Real Christmas trees

  • smell better
  • family fun time cutting down the tree
  • helps support Christmas tree farms
  • more easily recycled than artificial trees
  • do not contain plastics that may contribute to indoor air pollution

Artificial trees

  • less expensive
  • easier to set up and take down
  • more durable
  • less messy

Which is better for the environment?

The manufacturing and shipping of artificial trees causes a much larger carbon footprint than the cutting down of a real tree, especially when one considers that 98% of the real trees used in the United States were grown on tree farms and not cut from the wild. If an artificial tree will be kept and used in place of a real tree for 12-20 years (depending on size), then the carbon footprint may become even. When it comes to indoor air quality, artificial trees may contain plastics that can contribute to indoor air pollution and may trigger respiratory symtpoms in sensitive people. Real trees that aren’t properly watered or that are kept in a heated environment for too long may dry out and become a fire hazard.

So what’s your pleasure – real or artificial?

A Greener Clean

Interested in a greener clean? A little concerned about the health effects of the chemicals that companies are trying to convince you to buy? Here are some environmentally safe products you can use to clean your home without worrying about dangerous chemicals or smells.Cleaning Products

Green cleaning starts with two basic household substances – baking soda and vinegar. Baking soda can be used to clean, deodorize, and scout. Vinegar is great for cutting grease, removing mildew, and deodorizing.

Combining these two can be used to clean your whole home. A great all purpose cleaner can be made from mixing ½ cup vinegar with ¼ cup baking soda and ½ gallon of water. I keep mine in a spray bottle on the kitchen counter.

For special areas of the house, try these mixtures:

  • vinyl or linoleum floor cleaner – 1 cup vinegar in 1 gallon of water and 2-3 drops of baby oil
  • wood floor cleaner – 1 cup vegetable oil plus 1 cup vinegar
  • carpet cleaner – 1 cup vinegar and 1 cup water
  • tile floor cleaner – 1 cup vinegar added to 1 gallon water
  • Bathroom cleaner – 1 cup hydrogen peroxide and 2 cups water to get rid of mold
  • toilet bowl cleaner – ¼ cup baking soda plus 1 cup vinegar
  • tile cleaner – baking soda to scour, water to rinse
Do you have any green cleaning methods you’d like to share?

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