Tuesday, 10 April 2012

Green Wash(ing up)

I was washing up, using the washing up liquid left in our temporary apartment by the previous occupant when I noticed that it had a Green Label. I then looked at all the other packets and bottles around. There's so many green labels out there - which can you trust?

So many different labels!
  Back in the UK I used two washing up liquids, dependant on availability and budget. One was Ecover and the other was a supermarket's own brand liquid that had an EU Ecolabel. The Ecolabel aims to make it simple for consumers to choose environmentally friendly products. It certifies a whole range of products: soaps, shampoos, hair conditioners, cleaning products, textiles, footwear, paints, computers, TVs, floor coverings, furniture, soil, lightbulbs, heat pumps (air conditioners that heat too - a foreign concept in Singapore ;)), lubricants, mattresses, copier paper, toilet paper, campsites and hotels. Quite a varied list! All in all there are over 17,000 products that have been labelled.

But is it any good? The other liquid that I bought was Ecover. They like the label but have a number of issues with it - I guess nothing's perfect!

Turning to Singapore's very own Green Label. It covers even more products than the EU's:  Automobile Tyres, Cosmetics, Dishwashers, Electric Kettles, Environmentally Innovative Products, Espresso and Coffee Machines, Fire Extinguishers, Gas Cookers and Gas-fired Cooking Appliances, Hand Driers, Hot Water Storage Tanks, Insulators, Mattresses, Mobile Phones, Photovoltaic Equipment, Refrigerators and Freezers, Solar Powered Products, Textiles, Cement and Precast Concrete Product, Brick, Tile/Ceramics, Standard Laundry Powder Detergent, Concentrated Laundry Powder Detergents, Laundry Liquid Detergent, Dishwashing Detergent, Floor Cleaner, Computer System Unit, Electronics - Computer Monitor, Washing Machine, Air-Conditioners, Compact Fluorescent Lamp, Photo Copiers, Printers/Faxes and Multifunctional Devices, Correction Fluid/Tape, Organic Fertilizers, Products Made From Recycled/Renewable Fibres
Industrial and Institutional Cleaners, Carpets, Adhesives/ Sealants, Panel Boards, Wall Coverings, Products Made From 50% Recycled Materials, Biodegradable Products, LED, Food Packaging, Crockery and Cutlery, Paints and Surface Coatings, Stationery Paper, Hygiene Products, Printing Paper, Office Automation Paper, Independent Solar Cell Powered Calculator, Independent Solar Cell Powered Watch,
Hair Spray/Gel/Mousse, Deodorant Stick/Roller/Spray, Shaving Foam & Cream. Phew!
Both schemes are members of the Global Ecolabelling Network.

My mission, from now on, is to only buy Green Label products. I shall report my success via twitter. Follow me @livinggreeninsg.

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