Green Tip and Trade

Make sure you get the safest supplies for your children.

Angela Kim Dec 4, 2010

Pencils, binders, book bags, and art supplies may seem innocent enough, but some types and brands can be damaging to the environment or your health.

For example, many plastic binders are made with PVC vinyl which can contain phthalates and other hormone-disrupting chemicals, but you can avoid these concerns by buying binders made of recycled materials. Back packs are often made with vinyl too and can release harmful volatile organic compounds (VOCs) into the air, but if you shop smart you can get a bag made from hemp, organic cotton or recycled materials, instead.

Learn more with NRDC’s Simplesteps.org Back to School Checklist for safe and environmentally friendly tips and [product ideas]( upplies-your-children) .

As a nonprofit news organization, our future depends on listeners like you who believe in the power of public service journalism.

Your investment in Marketplace helps us remain paywall-free and ensures everyone has access to trustworthy, unbiased news and information, regardless of their ability to pay.

Donate today — in any amount — to become a Marketplace Investor. Now more than ever, your commitment makes a difference.