Essentials for Well Being

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Issue date: Wednesday, August 05, 2009

In this issue you'll find stories about:

Back to school green ideas

Packing a lunch
Use a PVC- free reusable lunch box and reusable containers
·The average-size elementary school produces 18,000 pounds of lunch waste.
·By using reusable containers, you can contribute to the prevention of 67 pounds of waste per school from going to landfills.

Recycle printers ink cartridge
According to the Green Guide For Everyday Living, three gallons of oil are required to produce one new ink cartridge. Others such as report three quarts are required to produce one new ink cartridge. In either scenario it still makes sense to recycle. How can you help? By recycling. Encourage your school to arrange a cartridge-recycling program. Learn more at

Buy recycled paper
The average American uses an astonishing 730 pounds of paper product per year. According to Conservafree (a nonprofit organization), a scant 5 percent of our national paper consumption is made from recycled pulp.

When shopping for recycled paper, look for the following labels:
Post-consumer waste or PCW means that the product's pulp was made from paper once used by consumers; 100 percent PCW is most desirable, but rare.
Pre-consumer recycled refers to pulp made from scraps left over from the papermaking process as well as post-consumer content. The "% recycled" label represents the amount of both post and pre-consumer recycled content.
Green seal certified is awarded by a nonprofit that rigorously evaluates paper production with standards set for PCW content as well as inking, bleaching and other processes. See products at The Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) can certify that the pulp used to make paper originates from well-managed forests with intact, healthy ecosystems.
Processed chlorine-free or PCF indicates that no dioxin-releasing chlorinated compounds were used to bleach the product. Additionally, PCF-labeled products must be 30 percent PCW. Totally chlorine free (TCF), for virgin (non-recycled) paper, is unbleached or processed without the use of chlorine or chlorine derivatives. Least desirable of these is ECF, or elemental chlorine free, which is applied to paper bleached with chlorine derivatives that reduce, but don't eliminate, dioxin emissions. These labels are regulated by the Chlorine Free Products Association (

Source: Green Guide for Everyday Living (


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