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Since we learned so much about what makes bamboo eco or not in yesterday’s entry I decided to list three “Certified by Cara” super ecological bamboo products.

T-Shirt

OK, finding eco bamboo clothes I have decided is like the search for the Holy Grail. I mean no one is mechanically pounding bamboo into yarn, thread, or t-shirts for that matter. If they are their marketing/PR team is lacking the skills necessary to promote said bamboo products. Everyone who makes bamboo clothes is close, but no cigar. The best company I found so far is, Bamboo Body.

They state, “The bamboo in our fabric is grown in the Yunnan Province in China without the use of any chemicals or pesticides. The plantation is managed in strict accordance with the international organic OCIA/NOP standard.

Bamboo yarn is produced by pulverizing the bamboo stalks and then regenerating the fiber. This process does not use harmful chemicals. Our fabric is dyed using azo-free dyestuffs. Our factory operates in conformity with ISO9001:2000 quality standard and is committed to the environment by reducing emissions and recycling waste. The factory pays all workers appropriately and does not employ staff under the age of 18.

While bamboo is grown organically, without the use of pesticides or chemicals, bamboo fabric is not certified organic. The process of converting bamboo to yarn does not meet the strict criteria for organic certification.

Our bamboo fabric is certified by oeko-tex 100 standard which confirms that it is environmentally sound and does not include any harmful chemicals.”

Everyone else either states that oeko-tex 100 is not all it is cracked up to be or “that it is impossible to be 100% ecological, but as technology advances they hope to be”….technology…for all the companies waiting for the future to arrive, here is the past, what I like to call the anti-technological way, also known as the “mechanical way”. The mechanical way is done by crushing the woody parts of the bamboo plant and then use natural enzymes to break the bamboo walls into a mushy mass so that the natural fibers can be mechanically combed out and spun into yarn. This is essentially the same eco-friendly manufacturing process used to produce linen fabric from flax or hemp. Bamboo fabric made from this process is sometimes called bamboo linen. Very little bamboo linen is manufactured for clothing because it is more labor intensive and costly.” What that means is it messes with these “green” companies bottom line.

Chop It Up

The next company that makes the “Certified by Cara” seal is Totally Bamboo. I really like the twist chopstick set they sell. According to Totally Bamboo they had a chemist develop a high grade, non-toxic formaldehyde free food grade glue which they use exclusively on their cutting boards. Also. they do not use artificial dyes or stains. Their factory is ISO 9000 compliant which is a rating system covering non-polluting environmental issues and employee welfare, safety and minimum age. There are 2 colors, light and dark. The light is the natural color of bamboo. The dark is “cooked” to perfection, literally, a result of the heating process. The natural sugar in the wood is caramelized, producing the beautiful honey color. This is permanent and will not wash off. This allows the boards to be sanded if needed. They have other cool stuff on their site as well, like bamboo director chairs, for those eco Hollywood directors…lol.

Solid Horizontal-Grain Bamboo Flooring, Amber

Next to finding truly eco fabrics, eco flooring was the runner up as far as hard to locate. One company that receives the “Certified by Cara” seal, is Eco Timber.

This is what they have to say about how they are super awesome bamboo flooring rock stars, “EcoTimber bamboo flooring is made from bamboo plantations — not from wild habitats. Bamboo is a highly renewable resource, harvestable only four to six years after being planted. Its low moisture absorption properties make it ideal for humid climates and applications where moisture might pose a challenge for other types of flooring.

EcoTimber Bamboo flooring is made with a Low-VOC adhesive that easily meets the strict European E1 standard for indoor air quality.

There are currently dozens of bamboo flooring manufacturers, some of which have flooded the market with poorly-made products. Click here to see what sets them apart from others. ”

The business of greenwashing is becoming an art form these days as the big players are joining the “green” game. I expect it from them, but am sad to see some small business jumping on the greenwashing train to nowhere.

I thought this blog entry was going to be easy, but I was wrong.

Keep it real.

-Cara


Reason 98 from, 101 Reasons Why I Am Vegetarian:

Every year, 24,000 fishers die on the job, making fishing the most dangerous occupation in the world, according to the FAO/UN. Meatpacking has the highest serious injury rate by far of any occupation. Repetitive stress disorders and knife cuts are rampant in meat plants. Poultry processing workers earn wages that are, for a family of four, below the poverty level. Full-time contract poultry growers clear incomes of only $21,000 annually.

I started out this entry looking for search engines whose search results are solely female owned and operated web sites. You know sometimes you just want to support a sista. The sites I found were super ugly and overrun with Google ads and such. I don’t even want to give you the links to any of these sites, as they are super disheartening. Here is one link to see for yourself. This site is called Femina and no it does not make me proud to be a woman.

Ironically, Yahoo just got started their Womecentric site Shine today. I went to it and it is much more aesthetically pleasing then Femina and the like, but it is not about empowering or powerful women, it is just about targeting the female consumer base who love to buy their Procter & Gamble Crest White Strips [It seems Crest White Strips are their main advertiser, P&G who makes the Crest line refuses to stop testing its products on animals, despite the fact that these tests are not required by any law, and despite the fact that more reliable and humane alternatives do exist.].

Undies

This site is not about women supporting women, with their top story of the day being, “Lingerie hunt: Fancy panties that don’t cost $80 (for a piece of string )”. LOL. This is not a serious issue any woman is facing. I know I must sound like a crank, and I don’t think inherently there is anything wrong with nice lingerie, but when you have a voice that can reach so many people like Yahoo does, is this what we, as women, should be discussing? Instead, maybe we should discuss all the female genital mutilation that is going on in the world? Women globally are being mutilated against their will, so yes, I think it is socially irresponsible to have your main story be about g-strings, but maybe I am the minority [I do not really believe I am the minority. I believe more women do care, but people are told…sorry, this is another topic for another time…I have A.D.D.].

I guess again it is left up to us who want better, to create better. My next project [in line behind two other secret projects soon to be released into the world] will be the greatest Female Search Engine ever!!! I will make the commitment to use only truly sustainable advertisers if need be, but if that is not possible, I will do it for free out of love for my sistas and the brothers who support them.

Take back the night!

-Cara

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The 18th century philosopher Jeremy Bentham challenged the world about animals with his famous quandary: “The question is not, Can they reason? nor, Can they talk? but, Can they suffer?”. Curiously, science is every day discovering that in fact animals do all three: reason, communicate, and suffer. The differences between animals and humans are being blurred with every revelation. Man’s closest relatives share over 98 percent of our DNA, and all animals, including man, are related by a common ancestor. Today’s question must now be, can we humans use our known capacity for logic, communication, and empathy to take animals off our plates?

The Art of Greenwashing by Tom Fishburne

 

I learned a new word today, greenwash.

Permatopia.com definition of greenwash is,

the false claim of environmentalism by polluters, used as a noun and a verb. Most of the claims for environmental policies by governments and corporations are greenwash that distract from the goals of a sustainable civilization.

I heard the word on this super fresh site I found called gliving.tv.

Here is a little blurb about them, by them,

We started G Living to focus on the positive and creative side of green. We look for green solutions that are practical and easy enough for anyone to incorporate into their own lives. The solutions, ideas and products have to have the same (or a higher) standard than the traditional options everyone is used to.

You can look at it like this: G Living is not about just Green Living, it’s about smarter living. Here is the equation to figure out if something is “G”: it must have, The Green factor + Quality + Function + Design + Style + Price = “G”.

I like how they put that. They are located in Venice, California…just saying.

Anyway point is, I just sat through a 15 minute video [which NEVER happens] an interview by Sarah Backhouse, with the co-founder, Howard Brown, of the organic fashion line, Stewart+Brown [the other co-founder is his wife Karen Stewart] and really was into it. Watch it!!! You will hear terms like greenwashing and people power, you know you’ll love it. They are doing a cool/good thing, so do it up! I think the collections on their site are fresh.

I adore good fashion!

-Cara

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Wild salmon stocks in 20 Norwegian rivers have in recent years been wiped out by a parasite that first took hold in local aquaculture feedlots. Scotland’s river managers warned early in 2007 that one careless angler spreading the parasite could decimate Scotland’s wild salmon stocks as well. Pharmaceuticals and pesticides are typically added to all aquaculture pens to forestall disease and infection, sometimes doing neither and inadvertently causing environmental havoc.

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