San Francisco has just released a list of products--from office supplies to hand sanitizers--that it considers good for the environment. The city originally created the list for its own buying and contracting purposes--but has decided to open it up. Products were chosen based on: ingredients, recycled content, energy efficiency, and performance.
A few highlights:
FOOD: "Locally produced and/or sustainably certified foods; Vegetarian option at all meals; 2+ raw vegetables each meal; Low calorie, low-fat foods; Small portions (e.g. Cut bagels in half); Fat free or 1% milk, soy milk, 100% juice, water or tea (unsweetened)."
I guess pizza is out?
CLEANERS: Most of the cleaners on the city's list are institutional products--not for us at-home-users. The list recommends that residents make their own cleaners, using products like baking soda, lemon juice and vinegar. They even have "recipes" for the best way to clean things like your tub and toilet.
HAND SANITIZERS: Here, the city's buying guide goes further, suggesting specific brands and products. The two on their list are from Clean Well (made with thyme) and EO Organics (made with lavender). Sounds like they smell better than the stuff I've been using.
OFFICE SUPPLIES: The city requires departments to purchase office supplies that are PVC free. How can you tell? Know your plastics symbols. PVC is # 3.
You can find the entire list here.