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) .

We’re here to help you navigate this changed world and economy.

Our mission at Marketplace is to raise the economic intelligence of the country. It’s a tough task, but it’s never been more important.

In the past year, we’ve seen record unemployment, stimulus bills, and reddit users influencing the stock market. Marketplace helps you understand it all, will fact-based, approachable, and unbiased reporting.

Generous support from listeners and readers is what powers our nonprofit news—and your donation today will help provide this essential service. For just $5/month, you can sustain independent journalism that keeps you and thousands of others informed.