Green School Supplies ? A Back to School Guide for Students Going Green

Green School Supplies ? A Back to School Guide for Students Going Green

Clearly the classroom is the place where the future begins to unfold. What better place than schools to use greener, healthier products and model environmental sustainability? The market is teeming with earth-friendly school and office supplies, guarding the health of students and their teachers. Non-toxic school supplies make a real difference in the quality of the indoor air and the level of toxins that we expose our children to daily. Why not shut the leading polluters – PCVs, BPA, lead and xylene – out of class? A new generation of green school supplies can send them packing.

Many school supplies are made out of PVC – a plastic that contains chemical additives such as phthalates, lead, cadmium and/or organotins. These chemicals pose a threat to our health and are harmful across its whole lifecycle, from production, to use, to disposal. Also known as the poison plastic, PVC is found in vinyl products like lunchboxes, binders, markers, backpacks and raingear, and may take as many as four centuries to decompose in a landfill. Identify this leaching plastic by its three-arrow recycling symbol with the number 3, or the letters V or PVC.

Here are some safer alternatives to the common school supplies:

Binders are often coated in or made with PVC plastic. Try binders that are made of corrugated cardboard, such as the ReBinder, which can be found online through The Green Office. Avery also makes PVC-free binders and can be found at Staples and Target. 

Lunchbags and wraps that are PVC and lead-free will make lunch go down a little easier. Canvas or organic cotton lunchbags and wraps are a food-safe alternative, and they have the added bonus of eliminating all the waste associated with plastic baggies., and all offer lunch bags and wraps, and Wrap-N-Mat stores your lunch and then opens up to a placemat for a clean eating surface. For a retro look, tin lunch boxes like the ones from Tin Box Company can be found in many retailers and are starting to make a comeback thanks to sightings of celebrity toddlers with tin lunch boxes.

The stainless steel drinking container is a must, since many reusable water bottles can leach bisphenol A (BPA), a hormone-disrupting chemical, and should be avoided. Thermos sells plastic and steel food jars that are BPA and PVC-free.

Markers and pens are one of the most commonly discarded items in the classroom. Every year in North America, teachers throw out over 500 million dry-erase markers into their local landfills, where the PVC plastic cylinders will never decompose. In addition, the common chemical solvent in markers is xylene, a harmful neurotoxin which can be associated with headaches, asthma and fuzzy thinking. As a green alternative, try a class set of AusPen eco-friendly dry-erase markers which are not only made from 100% recycled aluminum, but they are also refillable with low-odour, non-toxic ink.

Art supplies can be a source of toxic material too. Modeling clays such as Fimo and Sculpey should be on the chopping block and replaced by Crayola’s PVC-free air-dry clay or Mary’s Softdough, which has a chemical-free formula. And while the humble crayon appears inoffensive, crayons made from soybean oil, like the ones from Kid Star and Prang, are non-toxic, biodegradable and safe for the environment… and curious mouths.

As for back to school clothes shopping, certain retailers help take the worry out of our selections by claiming to only carry PVC-free clothes and shoes. H&M, Nike and Asics products contain no PVC, while Jansport and Land’s End backpacks and rain jackets have scrapped the poison plastic.  

Whether it’s a lead-free lunchbox, xylene-free marker, BPA-free drink container, or PVC-free binders and backpacks, the choice is clear. Choosing non-toxic school supplies pays off in the health of our schools, children and environment. This year, back to school shopping can be a little more reassuring, knowing that green alternatives to toxic school supplies have got our backs.

Maureen O’Neill is an environmental consultant for EcoSmart Products, the North American distributor of AusPen eco-friendly dry-erase markers. Maureen writes on various health and environmental themes such as indoor air quality, waste management, green schools and corporate sustainability. Visit her blog at

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Various Kinds of Packaging

Various Kinds of Packaging

Every product whether electronic, consumer good, furniture or other, needs packaging. Packing is done to protect the product as well as it is an excellent marketing scheme for selling.

Basically there are protective, flexible and custom packaging. In protective one, great care is taken for the product, as generally it is either very expensive or fragile. So you will have to depend upon this for safe transportation of the product. Here weather, extremes of temperature along with other things are taken into account.

Pouches, bags and wraps are considered under flexible packaging. It is very helpful in reducing waste. Owing to this and other reasons, flexible packaging industry has become very big in USA.

Custom packaging is done as per the requirements of the customer. Client get this done on the basis of their marketing plan as well as kind of product. Actual creativity is shown in this type of packaging. This include attractive color, printing, labels, product related designing and more.

Basic kinds of Packaging

Film Packaging
Many kinds of films are used for packing different products. Like blister film packaging is used in pharmaceutical, medical as well as for consumer good. It is a very tough packaging that not only protects the product inside but it also displays it clearly for buyer to purchase it. Then there are shrink wrap packaging in which the film holds the product tightly after heat it, anti fog films, anti static films, barrier films and so on. Polyvinyl chloride (PVC) films is the chief material used in these film. In addition to this polyethylene (PE), polypropylene (PP), polyolefin are also used extensively.

Plastic Boxes
Most of the grocery and dairy items are packed in different kinds of plastic boxes and plastic films. You will find curd, yogurt, juices etc in the smart plastic packaging. Also any item that needs to be transported is packed in plastic boxes.

Thermocol Packaging
Thermocol packaging is done for the consumer good such as electronics. TV, refrigerator, iron, washing machines are packed with thermocol in cardboard boxes as these protect these act as shock absorber.

Textile Packaging
Textile packaging is done for the automobiles during their transportation. Also the custom made packaging is done for this and it is really very effective from shock absorbing point of view. Generally textile inserts are used that are fit into metal containers.

Foam Packaging
Foam of varied thickness is used in the form of plain sheets as well as rolls for packing purposes. Goods are wrapped in foam packaging and these are also insert in the corner of the packed material. Sharp edges of the furniture is generally protected during travelling with foam packaging.

Check out b2b marketplace for all kinds of packaging films and industry information.

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Sustainable packaging: Plastic bag makers kick off bag-recycling events for Earth Month

Sustainable packaging: Plastic bag makers kick off bag-recycling events for Earth Month

To help promote the growing national trend of plastic bag recycling, the Progressive Bag Affiliates (PBA) of the American Chemistry Council announces a trio of new recycling partnerships to launch during Earth Month. Hundreds of new recycling bins for plastic bags and product wraps will roll out around the country over the next few weeks as municipal leaders, local businesses and community partners work to spread the message about the importance of plastic bags recycling line .

On April 14th Philadelphia’s Temple University, and the PBA will partner with Keep Philadelphia Beautiful and the Pennsylvania Food Merchants Association to launch the citywide plastic bag recycling education campaign “Bring It Back Philly.” This event will be broadcast live on the PBA’s Ustream Channel at 11:00 AM. The channel also will host a live chat during the event. You can be a part of the conversation by logging in during the livestream or follow event updates on twitter with the hashtag bbphilly.

On April 20th in King County, Washington, PBA will join city and school officials in the “Bag Your Bags, Bring ’em Back” collection challenge at Kennydale Elementary School. At this event children will weigh bags they’ve been collecting, and the winning group will receive a “green” pizza party. Through this experience, students and area consumers will learn about the importance of recycling their plastic bags and product wraps by plastic recycling machine – and how it’s becoming easier and more convenient to do so at grocery stores throughout the community.

Also that week in Florida the PBA will celebrate Earth Day by kicking off the plastic bag recycling campaign, “A Bag’s Life,” a community-based public education campaign designed to increase awareness of the growing number of convenient opportunities to recycle plastic bags and wraps in the state.

According to the EPA’s data, the recycling rate for plastic bags and product wraps has doubled since 2005. In 2008 an estimated 832,394,000 pounds of post-consumer plastic film (including plastic bags and product wraps) were recovered to the latest National Post-Consumer Recycled Plastic Bags and Film Report. The boost in recycling is being spurred, in part, by greater consumer access to collection programs, primarily at large grocery and retail stores, as well as by new markets for these recycled materials.

“More Americans are recycling plastic bags and wraps by pet recycling line than ever before, driven by a growing recognition that plastic is a valuable resource,” said Shari Jackson, director of the Progressive Bag Affiliates of the American Chemistry Council. “We’re pleased to be a part of these three great events that will help further educate consumers about recycling plastic bags and product wraps.

“It’s not just bags, we find that many consumers are surprised to learn that they can return dry-cleaning bags, newspaper bags and plastic wraps from bread, paper towels, cases of soda and more. These materials are recycled into many useful products, including durable backyard decking, fencing, railings, shopping carts and, of course, new bags. What could be more timely than to spread this message during Earth Month,” Jackson said.

Last year, the Progressive Bag Affiliates announced a landmark recycling goal of 40 percent recycled content in all plastic shopping bags made by these PET recycling machines by 2015. When fully implemented, the Full Circle Recycling Initiative will reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 463 million pounds, conserve enough energy (mainly natural gas) to heat 200,000 homes, and reduce waste by 300 million pounds every year. More information is available at


source:news odemade

plastic recycling line

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