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Product and Consumer Good Manufacturers or Companies Emphasizing Earth-Friendly and Sustainable Production Choices

Activism > Environment

Summary. This document offers a directory of product and consumer good manufacturers or companies that emphasize earth-friendly and sustainable production choices. This list includes initiatives by companies that are not, by popular opinion, necessarily considered good for the earth. The products or services may be for sustainable construction or simply environmentally friendly consumer products. Guides to green living are also included here. This list was current as of 16 Apr 2008.

  • Apple Computer Environmental Initiative – “Environmental protection is a priority for the conservation of precious natural resources and the continued health of our planet. Apple recognizes its responsibility as a global citizen and is continually striving to reduce the environmental impact of the work we do and the products we create.”
  • ChangingWorldTech.com – “Changing World Technologies, Inc. (CWT) has developed a technology that turns waste into oil – the Thermal Conversion Process, or TCP. This technology not only produces clean-burning fuels, but promises to reduce the use of landfills and incinerators.”
  • EarthFriendlyGoods.com – “Earth Friendly Goods strives to meet the growing public demand for environmentally-friendly products. We have carefully scrutinized the best earth-friendly products to to help you live the green life. Many of our products are made from hemp, one of the only sustainable/biodegradable fibers available. It is the ultimate eco fiber. We also carry products made from organic cotton, soy, flax, wool, and other earth-friendly resources. The majority of the earth-friendly products offered at our stores are created by small business owners, including family businesses.”
  • Gaiam.com – Products for fitness, healthy living, home, and garden. “Founded in Boulder, Colorado in 1988, Gaiam is a provider of information, goods and services to customers who value the environment, a sustainable economy, healthy lifestyles, alternative healthcare and personal development. Gaiam (pronounced “guy-um”), is a fusion of the words “Gaia” and “I am” Gaia, mother Earth, was honored on the Isle of Crete in ancient Greece 5,000 years ago by the Minoan civilization.”
  • GrassRootsStore.com – Products include Bed & Bath, Personal Care, Baby & Mama, Natural Cleaners, Household Necessities, Home Décor & Entertaining, Air & Water Filters, Solar & Alternative Power, Books & DVDs, and Stationery & Office Supplies. “Grassroots offers environmentally-friendly products that allow people to make positive choices for themselves, their communities and the planet. Some people postpone making these choices because they feel it has to be all or nothing. But taking small steps to gradually replace conventional products with healthier alternatives can be just as effective for a sustainable future. Until Grassroots opened its doors in Toronto in 1994, there were very few options for environmentally-friendly product choices. For more than a decade, Grassroots has pioneered to bring sustainable, low impact products to the marketplace, guiding people towards awareness and environmentally-responsible lifestyles. Gradually, the word spread and our small, green business now mindfully operates two stores in Toronto. Because our products are so unique, demand grew beyond the city limits and even across the continent. The next logical step for us was to improve accessibility for everyone in North America by taking our store online!”
  • GreenHome.com – “We’re an on-line department store and resource for all your green living needs – a place to find up-to-date, credible information to help you make decisions about how to improve the quality of your life.”
  • HarvestCollection.Genpak.com – “The Harvest Collection™ from Genpak is a new and exciting line of compostable plates, compostable food containers, and compostable cups that are produced from naturally occurring, annually renewable resources such as corn, rice and wheat that will completely compost and biodegrade when placed into a commercially run composting facility. The compostable products within the Harvest Collection™ line look and feel just like traditional top-of-the-line plastic items, but have the added benefit of being produced from annually renewable resources. Choose from a wide selection of biodegradable food service products including dinnerware items, serving bowls, cups and hinged take out containers.”
  • HollySolar.com – Low energy lighting. “Holly Solar designs and manufactures original and custom LED lighting products and sustainable solutions; providing an immediate return on investment by increasing product reliability, user functionality and system longevity, while drastically lowering maintenance and replacement costs.”
  • NewLeafPaper.com – “We make paper with the highest percentages possible of recycled and sustainably harvested fibers, processed without the use of chlorine or chlorine derivatives. Bleaching without chlorine or chlorine compounds results in a much less polluting paper making process. No matter how well we recycle, there will always be the need for virgin fiber in the paper industry. Both trees and non-wood fibers are cultivated for paper making around the world. The United States paper industry is structured almost entirely around wood as the source of fiber. This has resulted in the decimation of our old growth forests. Even today, old growth forests continue to be clear cut to make paper. Non-wood fiber cultivation, when done sustainably, is an excellent source of virgin pulp for papermaking.”
  • RealGoods.com – “The company lays claim to the title of the oldest and largest catalog firm devoted to the sale and service of renewable energy products in the world. Real Goods is still devoted to the same principles that guided its founding—quality, innovative, well-made products for fair prices, and unsurpassed customer service with courtesy and dignity. … our business has evolved from selling solar panels to a few off-gridders in the hills to being the foremost source of information and products in renewable energy, sustainable living, alterative transportation, and relocalization (the ultimate anecdote for global warming and peak oil). We intend to celebrate our three decades in business all year long and hope that you’ll join us!”
  • SeventhGeneration.com – “Seventh Generation is committed to becoming the world’s most trusted brand of authentic, safe, and environmentally-responsible products for a healthy home. For 18 years, the closely held Burlington, Vermont-based company has been at the forefront of a cultural change in consumer behavior and business ethics. One of the country’s first self-declared ‘socially responsible’ companies, Seventh Generation is a business that operates according to a new and different set of principles and values that in many ways are a marked departure from those long considered ‘traditional.’ Its business practice is focused on offering people avenues to express their idealism, passion, and commitment to causes larger than themselves at every point along its supply chain—from suppliers and partners to shareholders, customers and its own staff. The company derives its name from the Great Law of the Iroquois that states, ‘In our every deliberation, we must consider the impact of our decisions on the next seven generations.’ Every time you use a Seventh Generation product you are making a difference by saving natural resources, reducing pollution, keeping toxic chemicals out of the environment and making the world a safer place for this and the next seven generations.”
  • Solar and Alternative Power Product Manufacturers and Providers – Resources for Life Directory
  • SolarHost.co.uk – “Web Hosting uses a lot of power, what with the 24/7 servers, backup systems, redundant networks, power backup generators and much more. Solar Host now provides a reliable web hosting service at a fair price using 100% solar energy. Our purpose built data center has gone above and beyond the call of duty to ensure the most eco-friendly service possible.”
  • Sunchips.com – Solar powered manufacturing plant in Modesto, California.
  • Technology Services Resource Group – Computer services provided on-site, mostly using bicycle transportation year-round.
  • TerraChoice.com – An environmental marketing company that addresses, among other things, the six sins of greenwashing.
  • TheGreenGuide.com – By National Geographic. Warning: The site contains pop-up advertising.
  • Wal-Mart Sustainability Initiative – “Because of the success you have created. Because of the success of your company. The world has great expectations of you. They expect this company to play a bigger role. You have both an opportunity and a responsibility to play that larger role. Twenty-seven months ago, I talked to this company about leadership in the 21st Century. I discussed a range of issues where we could lead, and I set specific goals to guide our progress. With the environment, we said our goals would be supplied 100% by sustainable energy, to create zero waste, and to sell products that sustain our resources and our environment.” – Lee Scott, Wal-Mart President and CEO, speaking to employees, from “The Company of the Future” speech.

By Greg Johnson

Greg Johnson is a freelance writer and tech consultant in Iowa City. He is also the founder and Director of the ResourcesForLife.com website. Learn more at AboutGregJohnson.com