We purchase goods or services almost every day; as a result we have a choice of what to buy. With this in mind, we can select products that are environmentally safe or have only a minimal impact to our planet. When we buy green, we are practicing Environmentally Preferable Purchasing (EPP).
How can you tell a green product on a crowded store shelf? Look for these keywords: made from recycled materials, non-toxic, biodegradable, reusable, unbleached, refillable, water-based, non-aerosol, soy-based, remanufactured, CFC-free, or sometimes even environmentally friendly. Take time to read labels. You will learn about a product before you spend your money on something that could harm your family, pets, or our fragile environment.
|A children's playground made from environmentally preferable materials including recycled tires to make the dirt, recycled plastic in the tree and slide, and storm damaged tree wood rather than harvested tree products.|
When shopping, consider taking your own reusable shopping bags, buying natural or organic products, buying in bulk to reduce packaging waste, borrowing instead of buying, and asking your favorite store to stock more environmentally preferable products.
The Tennessee Pollution Prevention Partnership, in conjunction with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and Middle Tennessee State University Center for Environmental Education, has produced a Green Shopping for Tennessee presentation kit and guide. The program discusses how to make environmentally friendly purchasing decisions for home or work from groceries to school supplies to household cleaners and even appliances. The guide can be viewed/downloaded in PDF form. The presentation can be requested from your local Environmental Coordinator via 1-888-891-TDEC (8332).
The U.S. EPA has many resources for practicing Environmentally Preferable Purchasing. Click to the EPP site of the Office of Pollution Prevention and Toxics to learn more or to request EPA publications. For more information for State of Tennessee purchasers use the EPP Guide.
For more information about the Tennessee Pollution Prevention Partnership, please contact Karen Grubbs at 615-532-0463 or 1-800-734-3619 or by email at [email protected].