I know it’s confusing for a lot of folks to think through the whole green thing, but here’s a great chart from the folks at Green Depot.
They break it down into 5 categories making it easier to wrap your head around the whole concept. If they have one in your area, please go visit!
Oh and their graphics are cute too. Here’s a screen grab of their web site.
1. Air quality — Use nontoxic and non-allergenic products when possible. Products should have low- or no-VOCs (Volatile Organic Compounds)
2. Conservation — Protect resources…use sustainable, rapidly renewing, or products with a high recycled content. This is the re-use, re-claim, and re-cycle concept.
3. Local — Keeping the products you bur from within 500 miles of home conserves energy, uses less oil for transport, and supports the local economy.
4. Energy — With appliances and other systems in the home, the most energy is consumed when a product is used not manufactured so choose products that exceed Energy Star ratings.
5. Responsibility — How products are made makes a difference. Buy from companies that manufacture responsibly and market truthfully. Let’s stop the “green washing.” Most companies are now putting information on their websites. If it’s vague, it’s not good. Look for companies with specific information about their products, where they come from, and what’s inside them. How does the company handle manufacturing? It should be clear and detailed, as well.