Thursday, November 17, 2005
• Seventh Generation Disposable Diapers (30 count) | $12.99
• Huggies Supreme (56 count) | $10.99
The Archives of Disease in Childhood report that, among other harmful chemicals, disposable diapers like Huggies contain dioxin—a byproduct of the chlorine bleaching process, and a highly toxic carcinogen and endocrine disruptor. Environmentally friendly brands like Seventh Generation sell unbleached diapers made without dyes, perfumes, or chemicals. Some other European eco-diaper brands such as Moltex are also biodegradable, but must be composted. Due to the highly compressed, airless nature of a landfill, no diaper, regardless of its materials, will biodegrade.
• Recycled Tire Swing | $79.95
• Plastic Tire Swing | $229
At the end of 2003, the US generated approximately 290 million scrap tires. Historically, these scrap tires took up space in landfills or provided breeding grounds for mosquitoes and rodents when stockpiled or illegally dumped. Fortunately, markets now exist for 80.4% of these scrap tires—up from 17% in 1990. They’re reused as fuel, recycled for civil engineering projects, converted into ground rubber and also made into products like these uniquely designed, handmade tire swings available in forms such as kangaroos, horses and even airplanes.
• Earth Friendly Dolls | $37.99
• Totally Spring Barbie Doll | $12.99
Although not quite as stereotypically attractive as a Barbie, these green dolls are handcrafted in the US from the highest quality natural and recycled materials. The thick hair is made from cotton. The skin is made from hemp. The soft stuffing is made from recycled plastic containers. Barbie’s comparatively low price belies the full cost of her petroleum-intensive plastic manufacturing process, her plastic and paper packaging, and transporting her and her billions of accessories from Southeast Asia to the US.