Green Products for Earth Day (Part 1)

Inspired in 1970 by a U.S. Senator galvanized by a horrific oil spill off California’s coast, a grassroots movement has grown into a global celebration.

April 22nd marks the 41st annual anniversary of Earth Day – a day set aside to celebrate and increase our awareness of what we can do to nurture our planet. What began as a national “teach in” has blossomed into an event filled day that brings people together to learn about progress, issues and technological breakthroughs that are wrapped around the environmental movement.

The momentum of the green movement can be measured with companies reducing their carbon footprint by utilizing recycled materials, operating sustainably and offering products that are Fair Trade, organic and free of the hazardous chemicals.

Here are some these products worth checking into – for Earth Day and beyond.

Human Footprint: Everything You Will Eat, Use, Wear, Buy and Throw Out in Your Lifetime, by Ellen Kirk (from National Geographic Kids)

Based on National Geographic’s program of the same name, this slim children’s book is is a panoramic view of the astonishing excess we live with but aren’t really aware of. Although the pictures seem digitally created, they’re meticulously created by hand – from the over 13,000 pints of milk a person consumes in their lifetime to 28,433 yellow rubber ducks representing the number of showers we take during our lives.

“It makes you think what it means to have a footprint on the earth,” says Jennifer Emmett, National Geographic Society’s Editorial Director of Children’s Books. “The book shows we can live on the earth more thoughtfully,” she said.

The book and the TV- DVD are available at Amazon and in many large bookstores.

Green Toys

Pengaloo tests childrens memory and its eco-friendly too!

Green is a very broad category, says Adrienne Appell, a representative of the Toy Industry Association. It includes toys made from recycled materials, something to teach kids about the environment to one that helps reduce your carbon footprint.

The association’s website is an excellent resource for parents – featuring information on earth-friendly toys and useful videos and links.

There are several toy companies worth mentioning.

These colorful toys by Green Toys are made from recycled milk jugs

Blue Orange Games makes Pengaloo, a delightful wooden game featuring penguins and colored eggs that hide inside each wooden bird. The game tests kids’ memory skills and is perfect for kids age 4 and up. For every tree they use in their products, the company plants two trees.

San Francisco Bay area’s Green Toys  – all made in the U.S. – offers a flatbed truck and race car that are made from recycled milk jugs or HDPE plastic. Made without BPA, PVC, phthalates, or external coatings and packaged in minimal recycled packaging, these toys are made without metal axles for added safety.

Snack Taxi

More parents are turning to reusable shopping bags. Why not reusable sandwich bags?

Snack Taxi makes colorful nylon-backed sacks for lunches and snacks for kids and adults

Snack Taxi offers reusable and stylish snack bags, including two sizes of Snack Sacks and Sandwich Sacks. They also have Lunch Sacks, colorful napkins and bright-colored produce bags. The sacks all have nylon backing and there’s a big variety of patterns and colors to choose from.

“A lot of adults use these,” says Erin Kelly-Dill, Snack Taxi’s founder and creator.

“If you use one of these for a few years,” she said, “you’ll keep 1,000 plastic baggies out of the landfill:”

Recently approved by Green America, a non-profit promoting environmentally friendly products and services, these snack bags are machine and dishwasher safe. Reasonably priced, Snack Taxi sacks are available at various retailers and online.

Be sure to check out Part 2 of this article – there are still more cool eco-friendly products to see!

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