Replace Toxic Products in your home

Everyday Roots

This book includes home remedies, natural beauty recipes and Diy household product tutorials. Discover over 215 suprising natural home remedies using common ingredients like onion, lemons and apple cider vinegar. EveryDay Roots will help you to make healthy changes in your life. Learn how to treat coughs, headaches and other health conditions with common ingredients like honey and watermelon. When you buy the book you get a 328 page Pdf with a clickable table of contents. Read more here...

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Disposing of Household Chemicals

By now, you're probably ready to gather up all your cleaning products and dump them in the trash. Not so fast While it's a good idea to remove harsh chemicals from your home, you need to dispose of them safely. The earth will thank you for it. To get rid of household chemicals, don't throw them in the trash, pour them down a drain, or burn them. If your community has a day designated for hazardous waste pickup, unload them then. If you're not sure how to dispose of hazardous waste where you live, call your city's waste department or your garbage company or go to This helpful site lets you type in the kind of stuff you want to get rid of (such as paint or household cleaners) and your Zip code, and it finds a disposal facility near you.

How Household Chemicals Can Affect Your Health

The following table spells out health problems that common household chemicals can cause. Cleaning products, paint stripper, adhesive removers, some fertilizers Cleaning products, disinfectants, metal polishes, car care products, carpet and upholstery cleaners Antibacterial cleaning products, disinfectants, deodorizers, pesticides Cleaning products, toilet-bowl cleaners Drain uncloggers, oven cleaners, dishwasher detergents Antibacterial cleaning products Cleaning products, disinfectants, drain uncloggers Antibacterial soaps and cleaning products, pet shampoos This list is overview of some of the health problems household chemicals can cause, but of course it's not diagnostic. If you're suffering from any of the symptoms mentioned here, see your doctor. If you use products that contain any of the chemicals in this list, buy small quantities so you won't have to worry about disposing of leftovers. Also, be sure to work in a well-ventilated area (fresh air reduces the concentration of...

Low Toxic Cleaning Products

While cleaning products help remove harmful contaminants such as mold, bacteria, and particulates, exposure to many conventional cleaning products can also create health problems, particularly for individuals who have preexisting health conditions such as asthma or allergies, or who have chemical sensitivities or a compromised immune system. Some cleaning products can cause headaches, dizziness, skin irritation, respiratory irritation, eye irrita- CLEANING PRODUCT SELECTION CRITERIA The number of nontoxic (or low-toxic) cleaning products on the market is increasing, and many of these products are just as effective as their more conventional counterparts. When selecting cleaning products, look for those that are labeled nontoxic, low VOC (low volatile organic compounds) or zero VOC, and biodegradable, and that have the following attributes tion, while others contain cancer-causing substances, reproductive toxins, central nervous system toxins, and endocrine system hormone disruptors. A...

Cleaning Products

Most janitorial cleaning products contain ingredients that may cause harm to human health, indoor air quality, and the environment. Some ingredients in janitorial cleaning products can instantly burn the eyes, skin, and lungs. By choosing the least toxic cleaning products for your organization, you lessen your environmental impact, and you also lessen the chance for an employee to be harmed. You can determine which products have low levels of toxins by observing the following Reading the product label and Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS) can help you make this determination. The MSDSs of many cleaning products that are sold to the general public can be found in the National Institutes of Health's Household Products Database at http, or via Link 5-2. Examine the list of institutional cleaning products that have been certified by Green Seal as meeting its Standard GS-37 for general cleaners and GS-40 for floor-care products. This list is available at...

Selfregulation failure

And shifting trends and rather than making continual progress, reversals in corporate policy are not uncommon. In the UK, Little-woods clothing stores were a major participant in the Ethical Trading Initiative (ETI), but a change of management led to its withdrawal from the ETI and its ethical trading team being closed down, as corporate responsibility was not seen as an important issue to consumers (ETI, 2003a). Green consumerism was a growing trend during the early 1990s, but as a result of changes in consumer preference during the 1990s, sales of 'green' product ranges fell and many supermarket own-brand ranges of 'green' cleaning products, for example, were discontinued (Childs and Whiting, 1998). These examples suggest that the social or environmental improvements made as a response to consumer pressure have been rescinded as attention shifted, rather than taken up as new minimum standards, and that 'left to their own devices, transnational corporations are likely to fulfil their...

Chapter Building A Sustainable Agriculture

Available phosphorus sources may be economically depleted in 130 years at current energy prices. Phosphate ore extraction is an energy-demanding process. Energy depletion may considerably shorten the lifetime of phosphorus mining operations. Incidentally, a valuable amount of phosphates are wasted in detergents and then go unreclaimed through our sewage treatment systems.

The priorities of European policy

The earliest EU legislation on water was motivated mainly by concerns for public health, and was based on the setting of water quality objectives for drinking and bathing water, aimed at ensuring no damage to human health. The first EU law on water pollution was adopted in 1973 and dealt with the biodegradability of detergents. It was followed in 1975 and 1976 with two broader-ranging pieces of legislation the surface water directive, which was designed to establish common standards for surface water abstracted for use as drinking water, and the bathing water directive, which was designed to improve the quality of water used for swimming and bathing. The 1975 directive was motivated mainly by public health concerns, but it had the effect of controlling pollution by setting mandatory values (required of all states) and guide values (ideal goals) for nearly 50 parameters, including colour, odour and quantities of chemicals and heavy metals.

Looking to the Future

Proper disposal of household chemicals (don't pour them down the drain) helps as well. When rains wash away oil, gasoline, and other polluting chemicals, they also pick up excess fertilizers on their way to streams and lakes. There they cause algae and weeds to overgrow in the water.

Green Procurement in US State and Local Governments

The state has adopted eco-friendly standards for cleaning projects and acts to reduce the use of pesticides 9 . In 2001 alone, Massachusetts purchased 68 million worth of products with recycled contents 21 . The state also publishes the Recycled and Environmentally Preferable Products and Services Guide for Commonwealth ofMassachusetts State Contracts. This guide includes information not only about recycled content products but also about low-toxicity cleaning products, energy efficient lighting, bio-based lubricants, and swimming pool ionization systems that reduce chlorine substantially 5 . And, since the state's contracts can be used not only by state agencies, but also by municipalities, schools, public colleges and universities, public hospitals, certain nonprofits, and even other states, Massachusetts makes it relatively easy for many government units to identify and purchase environmentally preferable products. Local governments also have been green...

Research questions and further course of study

Regarding the chosen product focus of the study, the research project was generic rather than product-specific or shopping place-specific. Environmentally oriented consumer behaviour was examined with regard to products consumed on a daily basis. Products such as foods, cleaning products, and toiletries groceries or typical 'supermarket'9 products were at the centre of the study. For an investigation of consumer cognition under real-life conditions such a generic focus appears to be essential.

Chemicals in Household Products and Their Effects

Many household products like detergents, furniture polish, disinfectants, deodorizers, paints, stain removers, and even cosmetics release chemicals that may be harmful to human health as well as cause environmental concerns (see the table, Household Products and Their Potential Health Effects). Insecticides, pesticides, weed killers, and fertilizers that are used for maintaining one's lawn and garden are another source of household pollution. Their entry into the house could occur through air movement or adsorption by shoes and toys, which are then brought inside the house. Other household products that contain harmful chemicals are antifreeze, car cleaners and waxes, chemicals used in photo development, mice and rat poison, rug cleaners, nail polish, insect sprays, and wet cell batteries. Such household chemicals may pose serious health risks if not handled, stored, and disposed of properly.

Diminishing Oil and Gas Reserves

Diminishing Oil Reserves

The World is entirely dependent on oil. The transportation sector in particular, so vital in our society for carrying people, goods, food and materials, relies on more than 95 of its gasoline, diesel and kerosene derived from petroleum, and consumes about 60 of the oil produced. We also depend on oil for the large variety of petrochemicals and derived products such as plastics, detergents and synthetic fabrics that today are so ubiquitous in our daily lives that we can hardly think about where they come from.

Freshwater eutrophication

Winter Lake Eutrophication

Algal blooms have increased markedly in many freshwater lakes and ponds they also occur in very-slow moving water, in canals and rivers such as the Norfolk Broads. The problem can be attributed to the increasing amount of phosphorus entering the affected waters. We have already seen that phosphates are a major component in modern detergents, but they are also present in human sewage, animal excreta, industrial effluents and agricultural fertilizers.

Reporting and handling of data

The second axis of a bracketing framework is also rather obvious the products that were discussed during the interview. Some categorizing of products had to be undertaken, otherwise the number of products that had to be dealt with by the framework would have got out of hand. For food products, six product classes were distinguished dairy products (unprocessed), plant products, meats, drinks, bakery products, and 'other food products'. For non-food products, four product classes were distinguished toiletries, washing and cleaning products, paper products, and 'other non-food products'. Each such product class comprised a number of individual products or product groups, e.g. the class 'plant products' comprised four product groups S For the British sample, washing+cleaning products had the best PPO parameters three washing+cleaning oducts were in the top four, and there were only five food products in the top eleven PPO ranks. This ntrasted with the German samples. Here, dairy products...

Results and discussion

Torg Gard Clutch

For the control of total toxicity of the initial water and for the determination of individual toxic substances (for example of NphEO), it is necessary to use the chemilminescent and bioluminescent tests and one of the immune biosensors, based on electrolyte semiconductor structures or surface plasmon resonance (SPR). The thermal cell biosensors with Sacchromices cerevisia and bioluminescent test with Vibrio fischeri as the sensitive biological elements were non-effective at the low concentrations of such toxic subsrances as detergents. It is the same situation in the intermediate stage of water purification, after its treatment by ozone and UV-radiation. At the final stage of water purification, it is more suitable to use a Daphnia chemi-luminescent biosensor and immune biosensor based on ion-sensitive field effect transistors (ISFETs), as this is more sensitive in comparison with the other immune biosensors.

Envisioning a Sustainable Factory

Another notable European example of sustainable business is the company Ecover, located in Oostmalle near Antwerpen, Belgium. The company produces a range of washing and cleaning products designed to minimize environmental impacts. Indeed, the company's philosophy is explicitly based on principles of sustainability. The company dates back to 1987 and has been steadily growing in size and market coverage. It is currently the market leader in the United States for ecological washing products, and its sales are growing at a fairly dramatic rate each year. The Ecover plant provides the glimmer of a possibility that factories might indeed be seen as more than polluting engines of industry. Rather, they may begin to be viewed and conceived from the beginning as elegant, living org a n-isms. While Ecover admits that all washing and cleaning products are to some degree environmentally damaging, it has taken great strides to design products that do as little harm as possible. All its products...

Biocatalyst Formulation And Tuning

Whole-cell biocatalytic host. , It is relatively easy to introduce new desired enzymes into various E. coli strains. Generally, for many of the hydroxylation reactions that we have studied, degradative enzymes or downstream pathway enzymes that could modify or eliminate desired hydroxylation products, are not present in E. coli. In working with two liquid-phase systems, E. coli is more sensitive to apolar solvents than Pseudomonas strains. However, we have developed mixed apolar phase systems, based on highly apolar solvents such as hexadecane or substituted phthalates,19 which are highly compatible with E. coli. Thus, it is possible to use very toxic substrates, and produce equally toxic products, which dissolve in the hexadecane or phthalate phase and have very little effect on the host organism present in the aqueous phase.33

Air and Water Quality

Water policy was initially based on concerns about human health, and about making sure that drinking and bathing water were clean enough for human use. In the 1980s the emphasis began to shift towards protecting the aquatic environment, and four main strategies have since been used an effect-oriented approach based around the setting of quality standards for water intended for different uses a source-oriented approach aimed at preventing pollution at source by setting effluent standards for dangerous substances a product-oriented approach that sets standards for potentially pollutive commodities such as fertilizers and detergents and the setting of design specification standards for boats and ships aimed at preventing oil pollution.

Individual Behavior and Environmental Decisions

Evidence since the 1970s has noted a consistently high level of support for environmental protection, and support for regulations that go further to ensure conservation of natural resources (Dunlap and Scarce 1991 Dunlap 2002). This support is also evident in individual preferences for smart growth policies, community gardens, parks and nature reserves, farmers' markets, and other green products. However, this strong environmental concern and support is contradicted by the behavior of individuals who purchase large sports utility vehicles (SUVs), larger homes, and maintain levels of consumption inconsistent with their pronounced beliefs. Part of the problem lies in the difficulty for any individual in evaluating the environmental impact of their choices. Studies have shown that households hold mistaken beliefs about relative energy consumption of household appliances (Kempton et al.1985). Information, such as the energy-use indicators on appliances, has been found to poorly...

Water quality the policy response

The First EAP identified water as an issue on which priority action was needed, and the development of a Community policy on water quality can be dated from the almost immediate adoption in 1973 of a directive on detergents and their biodegrad-ability (73 404). Motivated by concerns that phosphate-based detergents posed a threat to water quality, and that different national laws on detergents posed a threat to free trade, it was prompted by the visible and increasingly widespread problem of foaming in rivers caused by the use of detergents which could not be broken down by sewage treatment. The directive prohibited the marketing and use of detergents containing surfactants in four categories that had biodegradability levels of less than 90 per cent. (Surfactants are surface-active agents, or substances which reduce the surface tension of liquids, allowing the formation of bubbles.) A supplementary 1973 directive (73 405) established standardized methods for testing detergents and...

Cleaning Compounds And Drugs Use Fossil Fuel Chemicals

Better cleaning products have been developed using chemicals derived from hydrocarbons. These synthetic detergents are carefully tailored to provide excellent cleaning power without the formation of scum. In most applications hydrocarbons derived cleaners have largely replaced soaps made from animal and plant products. Today 80 to 90 of the cleaning compounds used, both in the home and by industries, are based on chemicals derived from fossil fuel hydrocarbons.

Avoiding Exposure and the Use of Green Products

There are several steps one can take to reduce exposure to household chemicals. An adjacent table provides a list of alternative products. One can bring unused and potentially harmful household products to a nearby chemical collection center many communities have such a center. Chemicals received at these centers are recycled, disposed of, or offered for reuse. One may also purchase just the amount needed or share what is left over with friends. In addition, one should always avoid mixing different household chemicals. Indoor air quality should improve with increasing consumer preference for green products or low-emission products and building materials. Green products for household use include products that are used on a daily basis, such as laundry detergents, cleaning fluids, window cleaners, cosmetics, aerosol sprays, fertilizers, and pesticides. Generally, these products do not contain chemicals that cause environmental pollution problems, or have lesser quantities of them than...

Antibiotic Resistance

That every one of 480 isolates of the diverse spore-forming genus Streptomyces, well known for its capacity to produce multiple antimicrobial agents, was also able to resist at least six to eight (and some up to 20) different antimicrobial agents that protect the bacteria against their own toxic products. This natural protective capacity could be harnessed for the synthesis of new antimicrobial compounds. Without such new departures we will steadily lose our ability to combat bacterial infections.

Drop liquid castile soap

I barely have time to clean the house, let alone whip up my own cleaning products. What are some good, earth-friendly commercial cleaning products I can buy As consumers have become more interested in using safe, easy-on-the-environment cleaning products, companies have responded. If you don't have the time or inclination to cook up your own laundry detergent (page 25) or air freshener (page 24), check out some of these companies Biokleen (http makes laundry and dishwasher detergents, as well as general cleaning products. All its products are biodegradable, nontoxic, and not tested on animals. Ecover ( makes products from renewable vegetable and mineral resources and specializes in dishwashing and laundry products, along with soaps and other household cleaners. Ecover also make earth-friendly cleaners for cars and boats. Method ( makes a complete range of cleaning products using nontoxic, biodegradable ingredients. You can find...

Human and Environmental Health Effects

You can help prevent water pollution by simply not littering. Street trash that washes down storm drains is a major source of floatable debris. Properly dispose of used oil oil poured down storm drains and sewers is a major source of petroleum pollution. Use nonphosphate detergents for dish and clothes washing. Don't overfertilize lawns and use integrated pest management practices to reduce pesticide use. Use hazardous waste collection programs to dispose of batteries, fluorescent lights that contain mercury, unused oil, paint remover, pesticides and old household chemicals.

Air quality the policy response

The Community response to air quality problems began in the 1970s, but it was piecemeal, was prompted more by concerns about avoiding trade distortions than about protecting human health or the environment, and has always tended to lag behind the response to water quality problems. Although the first pieces of law on vehicle emissions (70 220 and 72 306) predate the first pieces of law on water quality (two directives on detergents in 1973), the body of laws on water quality built steadily during the late 1970s, and it was not until the 1980s that the EC began taking more concerted action on issues such as transboundary air pollution and threats to the ozone layer.

UnderstandiNg The SciEnce BehiND iT ALL

In a rapidly urbanising Asia, millions of people are using consumer goods such as detergents, dishwashing liquids, toilet cleaners, lotions, cosmetics and fragrances which are reaching water bodies and most likely coming back in drinking water. Not only that, pharmaceuticals such as antibiotics, anti-depressants, hormones and pain-killers are also being excreted from human bodies, and thus contaminating rivers. In view of the rise in cancers, allergies, miscarriages, behavioural disorders and other new diseases, a link has been suspected between them and 'emerging chemical contaminants'.

Use Warm or Cold Water instead of

Using warm or cold water in your washing machine can save quite a bit of energy. About 75 percent of the time you don't need hot water. Although this may not work for the dirtiest loads, it works just fine for most. Detergents especially made for cold-water washing help, too. So give it a try, and see what comes of it. The worst that can happen is you have to run the clothes through again on a hotter cycle. But you'll probably find that most of the time it doesn't matter.

The chemistry of sewage treatment

Most sewage works also receive the waste from industries in the area, such as food factories, electronics industries, engineering works, chemical manufacturers, textile factories, etc. As it arrives at the works the sewage is 99.9 per cent water, with the remaining 0.1 per cent consisting of dissolved salts, trace metals and a variety of other substances such as soaps, detergents, sugars, food particles, faeces, fats, oil, grease, plastics, clay and sand. All these substances can be classified as organic and inorganic components. The organic substances in sewage mainly comprise carbohydrates, proteins, fats, soaps and detergents. All of these can be broken down into simpler substances by the micro-organisms in the sewage purification process. Some of these breakdown products are present in the final effluent as it discharges into the river, others are used as the food for the bacterial slime or the activated sludge in the sewage works, whilst the remainder sink to the bottom of the...

Volatile Organic Compounds VOCs

Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) are an entire class of carbon-based chemicals that give off vapors at normal room temperatures. Thousands of products emit VOCs, including paints and lacquers, paint strippers, ad-hesives and sealants, carpets and carpet backing, cleaning supplies, pesticides, building materials and furnishings, office equipment (copiers and printers,) graphics and craft materials, and permanent markers.

Changes in lakewater chemistry

Although several studies have shown that small lakes close to prehistoric settlements became temporarily and mildly eutrophic during early periods of nearby habitation and agriculture (e.g., Renberg, 1990 Gaillard etal., 1991), the quasi-world-wide trend to eutrophication is a much more recent phenomenon. There are many examples of lakes in western Europe where the recent history of cultural eutrophication has been well documented. One of the earliest studies was on Lough Neagh in Northern Ireland. Despite its shallow and generally well-mixed nature, algal blooms became a serious problem in 1964, with damaging consequences for water supplies, amenity and sewage disposal. By analysing the changing frequencies of diatoms (Battarbee, 1978) preserved in dated sediments, it was possible to show that the trend to highly eutrophic conditions had begun in the mid nineteenth century and accelerated from the 1950s onwards. Similar historical records of eutrophication have been reconstructed for...

Biocatalysts Function In The Presence Of Organic Solvents

A critical consideration in the development of biocatalytic systems is the form in which the enzyme or enzyme system is going to be used. There are two general approaches. One is to use isolated enzymes. If these are inexpensive, they can be used as disposable biocatalysts, as is the case for glucose isomerase,10 which is the key biocatalyst in the production of high-fructose corn syrups from starch, or the lipases and proteases that are present in detergents. Alternatively, if enzymes are expensive to produce, they can be immobilized and used repeatedly by recovering the enzyme particles after each use.

Clean and Green Environmentally Friendly Cleaning

Nontoxic, earth-friendly cleaning products are nothing new. That's how people kept their homes clean before companies sold cleaners packed with synthetic chemicals. Your great-grandmother probably used vinegar and baking soda to scrub her house. This section shows that you don't need mass-produced chemicals to keep your home sparkling. Borax. This white powder is a naturally occurring mineral that dissolves easily in water and removes dirt. It also kills fungi and works as a deodorizer. You can find it by the detergents in most grocery stores. You'll learn several ways of using borax later in this chapter.

Cleaning Procedures and Equipment

The O& M manual and related trainings should address specific cleaning strategies and techniques, including the proper dilution and mixing procedures for concentrated cleaning products, the use of safety gear, provision of adequate ventilation, and strategies for reducing the cleaning-related waste of energy, water, or supplies. Maintenance staff should also be educated about how and where to properly store and dispose of cleaning products.

Coastal and marine impacts

Communities, detected in the fossil record from recent sediments as a response to reduced light penetration as a result of cultural eutrophication. In cores from the area closest to the densely populated regions around the southern shores of the Baltic, the change begins in the mid nineteenth century. The timing parallels the record of cultural eutrophication in many north European lakes. In the Gotland Basin to the north, the first clear evidence of an ecosystem response to increased nutrient supply is in sediments dated to the mid twentieth century. This coincides with the rapid increase in the use of artificial fertilisers and phosphate-rich detergents.

The Role Of Public Law In Controlling Pollution

On Earth Day in 1970, environmentalism emerged in part as a populist movement which enlisted lower-middle-class mothers concerned for the health of their children.34 Stories about hazardous wastes buried in urban neighborhoods, rivers that caught fire, a blowout of an oil well off the coast of Santa Barbara, accidents in chemical production facilities, and other incidents excited populist resentments that erupted in understandable moral outrage. Rachel Carson's Silent Spring (1962), among many other studies, described the destruction of wildlife by pesticides and demonstrated how negligent the nation had become in protecting its natural and ecological heritage. Americans agonized over cities filling with smog, species becoming extinct, wildlife disappearing, oil spills, fish kills, detergents foaming in rivers and lakes, beach closings, and any number of horrors which led them to regard pollution as a menace gone out of control.

Changed global nutrient cycles

Result of the mining of phosphate and its conversion to fertilisers and detergents. Although the former is used largely for application to farmed land, it, like detergent phosphate, often results in the enrichment of lakes, rivers and the coastal zone (see 10.2.1 and 10.4).

Effects of energy consumption on the environment at local and regional levels

The risks for the environment are not restricted to fossil fuels. The development of nuclear energy also raises a certain number of problems. The risks involved are not easy to estimate, since they are generally related to accidental phenomena rather than to normal operation. Consequently, the level of danger for the environment and the public is a subject of heated debate. It is related to the management of radioactive waste and to accidental leakage of toxic products throughout the production chain.

Soil Pollution

Volatilization Denitrification Ppt

Both organic (those that contain carbon) and inorganic (those that don't) contaminants are important in soil. The most prominent chemical groups of organic contaminants are fuel hydrocarbons, polynuclear aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), chlorinated aromatic compounds, detergents, and pesticides. Inorganic species include nitrates, phosphates, and heavy metals such as cadmium, chromium and lead inorganic acids and radionuclides (radioactive substances). Among the sources of these contaminants are agricultural runoffs, acidic precipitates, industrial waste materials, and radioactive fallout.

Grey Water Systems

Qanat Mexico

Section through the village of Khoranaq, in the Central Persian desert north of Yazd, showing the passage of the water from an underground channel or Qanat through the village, being used from clean to dirty uses. On its path the underground stream is used to 1. fill the drinking water cistern and 2. the bath house or Hammam where it emerges it is used for 3. washing of kitchen ware and clothes (without detergents) and 4. drops down a vertical chute to turn the horizontal mill wheel and emerges again to provide drinking water for the animals and water for the fields. Washing of clothes with detergent is done downstream of the animal drinking water pond and the water run to waste (Roaf). Section through the village of Khoranaq, in the Central Persian desert north of Yazd, showing the passage of the water from an underground channel or Qanat through the village, being used from clean to dirty uses. On its path the underground stream is used to 1. fill the drinking water cistern and 2....


The positive aspect of this strategy is that some individuals do indeed end up living sounder, more ecological lives. More bottles and newspapers are recycled, more lead-free petrol is bought, and fewer harmful detergents are washed down the plughole. The disadvantage, though, is that the world around us goes on much as before, ungreened and unsustainable - certainly in terms of a radical overhaul of our habits and practices. In the first place, one has the problem of persuading sufficient numbers of people to lead sustainable lives for it to make a difference to the integrity of the environment. It is evidently hard to predict just how far the message will spread and how many people will act on it, but it seems unlikely that a massive number of individuals will experience the conversion that will lead to the necessary changes in their daily behaviour.

Petroleum Economy

Petroleum, like all fossil fuels, primarily consists of a complex mixture of molecules called hydrocarbons (molecules containing both hydrogen and carbon). When it comes out of the ground, it is known as crude oil, and it may have various gases, solids, and trace minerals mixed in with it. Through refinement processes, a variety of consumer products can be made from petroleum. Most of these are fuels gasoline, jet fuel, diesel fuel, kerosene, and propane are common examples. It is also used to make asphalt and lubricant grease, and it is a raw material for synthetic chemicals. Chemicals and materials derived from petroleum products include plastics, pesticides, fertilizers, paints, solvents, refrigerants, cleaning fluids, detergents, antifreeze, and synthetic fibers.

Environmental Impact

Exploration, drilling and extraction activities are known as the upstream phase of the fossil fuels industry. Depending on the nature and location of the extracted fuel, these processes may affect the local environment in various ways. Coal extraction, particularly from surface mines, disrupts the natural landscape and produces large quantities ofwaste. The same holds true for surface mining ofnonconventional oil resources such as tar sands. Production of conventional oil and gas reserves usually has less visible impact on the natural landscape. Deforestation and erosion, disturbance of ecosystems and animal populations, local pollution because of accidental spills and human health and safety risks for neighboring communities are possible environmental consequences. The most important environmental issues during oil and gas production arise from storage, handling and discharge of processed water, drilling muds and chemicals. Modern oil production requires a large number of chemicals,...

Water Pollution

After World War II, thousands of new chemicals entered the waste stream. Petroleum distillates, detergents, and pesticides produced burning rivers, foaming streams, and dying lakes. In 1959, the Cuyahoga River between Cleveland and Akron burned for eight days. In 1963, nationwide pollution from municipalities, industry, and agriculture killed 7.8 million fish. In 1965, Lake Erie was so polluted with coliform bacteria, phenols, iron, ammonia, chlorides, and phosphates from industrial processes and municipal sewage that it was ecologically dead.

Toxic heavy metals

Arsenic is present in some detergents and was widely used in pesticides and herbicides until at least the 1960s. In seawater it exists mainly as arsenate but a proportion becomes converted to the more highly toxic arsenite. Arsenic compounds are readily concentrated in the tissues of certain marine fish.

Sewage treatment

Untreated domestic sewage consists mainly of waste water and solids from toilets, sinks and drains, which includes detergents (often containing phosphorus), other chemicals and plastics (e.g. from panty liners). Industrial waste is also dumped into sewers and oil and run-off from road systems may enter from storm drains. Raw sewage discharged into the sea may therefore contain large quantities of metals such as arsenic, cadmium, copper, mercury and lead as well as organic matter, petroleum products, fats, solvents and dyes. Thus there is considerable potential for human health risk and for ecological damage when untreated sewage is discharged into the sea. Currently over 80 per cent of Britain's large coastal discharges (serving more than 10 000 people) receive no treatment or are just screened. Hopefully this situation is changing as new legislation comes into force (see Section 10.1.4).

An Age of Abundance

At the end of World War II, the United States underwent rapid economic growth. The postwar abundance could be easily pinpointed by the mass consumption of everything from energy and detergents to plastics and pesticides. Goods were created and marketed to provide convenience, and amenities were plentiful. As Samuel Hays observed, a greater distance between consumption and its environmental consequences increasingly depersonalized the links between the two (Hays, p. 16). If people couldn't see an immediate environmental impact, society could ignore it.


Fish may be poisoned by a wide range of polluting substances, including pesticides, acids, ammonia, phenols, cresols, compounds of metals, detergents, or cyanides. Many of these substances are used in industrial processes or in agriculture and are released through drains or are accidentally spilled into waterways. Acid rain, derived from industrial pollutants in the atmosphere, causes rivers to become toxic for various kinds of fish. Some types of toxic algal blooms kill fish. During the 1990s the dinoflagellate Pfeisteria piscicida caused fish kills, ranging from a few hundred to a million fish at one time, in estuaries of the southeastern United States.

Green Marketing

Green marketing is a way to use the environmental benefits of a product or service to promote sales. Many consumers will choose products that do not damage the environment over less environmentally friendly products, even if they cost more. With green marketing, advertisers focus on environmental benefits to sell products such as biodegradable diapers, energy-efficient light bulbs, and environmentally safe detergents. Cleaning supplies that do not harm humans or environment


Approximately 80 percent of municipal water systems and close to 99 percent of rural residents in the United States rely on groundwater. In total, approximately 51 percent of the U.S. population depends on it for their water supply. The 1986 amendments to the Safe Drinking Water Act requires that well head protection plans be developed by each state to protect the land around municipal water supply wells from contamination. Individuals can help protect groundwater by disposing of household chemicals properly and fertilizing plants in limited quantities and can help conserve groundwater by limiting water use at home by taking shorter showers, not running water while brushing teeth, running dish and clothes washers with full loads, fixing leaky faucets and pipes, and limiting plant watering in the garden.

Hazardous Waste

Most hazardous waste comes from industrial sources. The EPA specifies four different categories of hazardous waste that are subject to regulation hazardous wastes from nonspecific sources involved in industrial processes such as spent halogenated solvents hazardous wastes from specific industrial sources, such as untreated wastewater from the production of the herbicide 2,4-dichlorophenoxyacetic acid (2,4,-d) commercial chemical products that may be discarded (such as benzene) used in the manufacture of drugs, detergents, lubricants, dyes and pesticides and wastes that are classified as toxic, such as vinyl chloride. Hazardous waste from many industrial processes include solvents such as methylene chloride, a probable carcinogen that is commonly used in paint removers. Trichloroethylene, a solvent that has been found in groundwater is monitored and regulated in drinking water in the United States. Drinking or breathing high levels of trichloroethylene can lead to damage of the liver,...

Household Pollutants

Hazardous household products fall into six broad categories household cleaners, paints and solvents, lawn and garden care, automotive products, pool chemicals, and health and beauty aids. Many commonly used household products in these categories release toxic chemicals. As an alternative, manufacturers are introducing products, often referred to as green products, whose manufacture, use, and disposal do not become a burden on the environment.

The Chinese Solution

About 25-50 of Chinese infants are given chuenlin by their mothers to clear them of the toxic products of pregnancy. One of chuenlin's alkaloids, berberine, can readily displace bilirubin from its serum-binding protein, causing a rise in free bilirubin, which can cause brain damage, along with icterus-induced jaundice. Placing total faith in Chinese herbs or proprietary medicine needs rethinking. Complications are increasing with increasing use among both Asians and Westerners. In a recent review of the use of Chinese herbal medicines in Hong Kong researchers of the Department of Clinical Pharmacology at the Chinese University of Hong Kong inform us that of the 150 most-often used herbs, 10 are out-and-out toxic 41 .

Hydrogen Fuel

The fifth criterion requires that the new fuel Yield only non-toxic products that do not harm the environment when reacted with ambient air. Under all conditions, water vapor is the only significant product of hydrogen combustion. Mixture ratios producing high temperatures with a slight excess of oxygen can result in the production of trace amounts of nitrogen oxides. The energy from the hydrogen combustion forces the nitrogen to react with the oxygen to form nitric oxide. As the hot gas cools, the nitric oxide reacts with more oxygen to form nitrogen dioxide. Under the worst possible conditions, high temperatures with excess oxygen, the reaction product gas contains 400 to 600 parts per million nitrogen oxides. The magnitude of this problem was shown in Figure 5.1 in the area labeled Hydrogen Lean. By careful control of the hydrogen air mixture ratio and, in some cases, the use of chemical reaction accelerators (catalysis) the output of nitrogen oxides can be reduced to low and safe...


Phosphorus is also a nutrient needed by all organisms for basic biological processes. Phosphorus is an element found in rocks, soils, and organic material. Its concentration in fresh water is usually very low. However, phosphorus is used widely in fertilizer and other chemicals, so it is often found in higher concentrations in populated areas. Phosphorus is commonly found as phosphate (PO4-3). High levels of phosphate and nitrate cause eutrophication. The main sources of phosphates in surface waters are detergents, fertilizers, and natural mineral deposits.

Commercial offices

The National Association of Realtors (NAR) headquarters building in Washington, DC, shown in Figure 5.1, is a good example of a private commercial office built to LEED Gold standards. Construction of the 46 million, 92,000 square foot (8,450 sqm) Class A building was begun in October 2002, and the building opened for business two years later. NAR occupies 44,000 square feet (4,100 sqm) on five floors of the 12-story building. By installing efficient HVAC systems and a high-performance glass curtain wall, the project uses 30 percent less energy than a standard building. The NAR also committed to purchase green power to supply 50 percent of the building's energy consumption. Innovative measures taken to extend the LEED requirements included implementing Green Tenant Improvement Guidelines to ensure that the sustainable design intent is carried out in the rented office space creating a comprehensive green housekeeping plan which requires the use of nontoxic cleaning products, recycled...


An analysis of the sequential order of freely recalled products (PPO analysis) revealed a certain structure to the order of recall. From the PPO analysis it emerged that products were not recalled randomly. Certain products appeared to be particularly good examples of green products. For the British sample, washing +cleaning products featured prominently in terms of their PPO parameters, as did dairy products for the


Leaders attending the 2002 World Summit on Sustainable Development (also known as Rio + 10) in Johannesburg, South Africa, pledged to double access to clean water and sanitary facilities by 2015.19 Most likely, they have big treatment plants in mind. For some reason, politicians seem fixated on large, centralized, and very expensive sewage treatment plants that kill pathogens and remove solids just fine, but don't really remove excess nutrients that can harm the ocean, especially tropical waters that are naturally low in nutrients. These nutrients come from detergents, agricultural runoff, and sewage.

Green Om Manual

The manual should also include reference documents that provide more in-depth information on technical topics or local services. These reference documents should include green cleaning standards, a list of third-party-certified cleaning products, a project-specific mechanical filter replacement schedule, a project-specific lighting maintenance and lamp schedule, an integrated pest management guide, local recycling pick-up and hazardous waste drop-off options, and public transit information and maps. The manual should be accompanied by the manufacturer's product information compiled and provided by the general contractor including owner's and operating manuals, product specifications, and warranty information, schedules for routine pre- and postwarranty maintenance, and as-built drawings.

Cleaning House

Every household gets dirty, and every household needs cleaning. But not everyone needs to buy and use all the cleaning products that are available. We have simply become accustomed to buying separate cleaners for each of a dozen parts of the house. Some specialized cleaning products serve unique purposes. For example, dishwashing detergent does an excellent job at one task no other kind of soap does better in its place, and it does not work nearly as well for any other job. On the other hand, some cleaning products are specialized to the point that one container may never be completely used. While some developments in consumer products have definitely brought better results, most of the innovations touted by companies that sell cleaning products are related to packaging and fragrance. If those are not important to you, consider making your own. Commercial cleaners are relatively inexpensive and they work well, so you may not feel that making your own cleaning products is a good use of...

Using less hot water

The temperature of the water from your domestic heater may affect the quality of your dishwasher's performance. If the water isn't hot enough, your machine will have a hard time doing the job. However, some detergents are rated for a lower water temperature. (For more information on water heaters, refer to the earlier section Keeping Water Heaters in Check.)


Once the design strategy is clear, local building materials and those requiring the minimum processing should be selected in preference to highly processed materials and those from further afield. Non-toxic products should replace chemically treated materials and those containing toxins. The durability of materials is also very significant as it will affect the lifespan of a building and, the longer a low-energy house lasts, the less relative impact its materials will have. Ideally, all building materials should be easily recyclable. Finally, the potential for flexible occupancy will help to extend the useful lifetime of a building.

About Polypropylene

The same properties that make PEX pipe a worthy choice are also true of polypropylene. It's flexible, economical, and easy to install, and it does not react to common household chemicals. Like polyethylene, polypropylene has a low coefficient of friction so fluid moves easily through it, and it's slow to conduct heat, which means the water temperature won't change much in transit. Watch for polypropylene pipe to become more common in the next few years.

Healthy Chemistry For Optimal Health

Healthy Chemistry For Optimal Health

Thousands Have Used Chemicals To Improve Their Medical Condition. This Book Is one Of The Most Valuable Resources In The World When It Comes To Chemicals. Not All Chemicals Are Harmful For Your Body – Find Out Those That Helps To Maintain Your Health.

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