Moving into a new place is the perfect time to go eco friendly.
When it comes to equipping a dorm room or apartment, the shopping list seems to grow every year. Typically, cleaning supplies, light bulbs and tableware tend to be at the bottom of that list, for students are never the most enthusiastic or picky about such mundane but necessary items.
But, with interest in the green movement increasing, the decisions over what exactly to purchase have never been more crucial.
In their search for cleaning supplies, students can keep in mind Clorox has come out with a new eco-friendly line called Green Works. The company promotes that all the line’s products are at least 95 percent natural, with most of the ingredients filed under biodegradable and petrochemical-free, as well as strictly derived from renewable resources.
Although these cleaners consist mainly of plant- and mineral-based ingredients, people have found that they are just as efficient and reasonably priced as the products they’ve used in the past.
If you venture out to a place like Whole Foods, selling brands like Mrs. Meyers, Seventh Generation and Method, expect to pay a little bit extra for its products because they tend to be even more eco-friendly.
Conserving energy is also important, and choosing the right light bulb could make a huge difference.
Switching out those generic incandescent bulbs for compact florescent bulbs takes little effort but saves a lot of energy.
Kurt Bresser, the university’s energy manager, said Temple’s student housing most commonly uses fluorescent tube in their lighting systems, which can consume anywhere from 60-160 watts, depending on the type and number of fixtures. On the other hand, the average compact florescent bulb uses only 13 watts of energy per bulb — for the same amount of brightness.
So instead of always flicking on that light switch, try to use desk lamps or floor lamps with compact florescent bulbs more often. Better yet, open up the curtains and use natural lighting if it’s sunny outside, and remember to turn all the lights off when leaving the room.
As far as tableware, purchasing anything that is reusable is definitely preferable over disposable paper products. It is also best to use rags instead of paper towels for the smaller messes. Even the paper towels you do buy can now be made out of 100 percent recycled content. Some drug stores, such as CVS Pharmacy, sell their own brands of eco-friendly paper towels at a very low price.
So, when it comes time to restock, make an effort to look for greener options because small steps make more difference than none at all.
Laura Fanciullacci can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.