Walk down the cleaning products aisle of any large supermarket and there will be row upon row of all sorts of cleaning liquid and potions.
Imagine how much it must all weigh – for what is the most part, water. All that weight had to be shipped from somewhere; adding to greenhouse gas emissions associated with transport. Additionally, there’s all the plastic packaging, again just to contain mostly water – and then there’s the non-water chemical components to consider.
Wanting a clean home is a wonderful thing – but at what cost to the environment?
You can make your own multi-purpose cleaner at home or use concentrated products that reduce both transport emission and plastic packaging issues – but when it comes to commercial products, I don’t think it comes more concentrated than this – a range of cleaning products in tablet form under the brand name of Conserve.
Take one of your old spray bottles, fill it with water and drop one tablet in and you have, for example, 32 oz of multi-surface cleaner – at a pretty reasonable price too.
Another nice aspect: petrochemicals, bleach and ammonia are not used in the Conserve range of cleaners; which includes a multi-surface spray, glass cleaner, bath cleaner and fabric freshener.
It’s my understanding the range will receive the EPA’s Designed for the Environment endorsement soon, a certification that allows manufacturers to put the DfE label on household and commercial products, such as cleaners and detergents, ” that meet stringent criteria for human and environmental health.” This at least provides some level of assurance the known really nasty stuff often found in cleaners is left out of the mix.
According to Sami from Conserve’s parent company Baumgarten, if all cleaning fluids were in tablet format it would reduce the number of trucks shipping liquid cleaners by a radio of 17 to one – that’s pretty amazing. Then there’s the saving in packaging to consider and the related environmental benefits.
Baumgarten appear to have a serious commitment to the environment in other ways too. Since implementing a recycling program, the company says it achieved a recycling rate of 700% (recycled waste vs. waste going to landfill). Its goal for 2012 is 900%, and they say they’ll beat that this year.
Baumgarten is also working with Georgia Institute of Technology to find ways to measure the emissions involved with a product’s life cycle, from the beginning of production and transportation to consumer use and eventual recycling; with a goal of the company becoming 100% carbon neutral by 2015.
Cleaning liquids in a tablet form certainly seems like a step in the right direction to me. You can learn more about the Conserve cleaning tablet solutions here.