by Karen Bil Ratzlaff, Staff Writer
And it gets worse. "Ingredients from household cleaning products make their way into the environment through various routes: they are flushed down toilets, poured down sinks, sprayed into the air, thrown into the trash, and dumped onto the ground. In fact, many hazardous cleaning products are landfilled or incinerated, upon which they release their toxins into the environment and contribute to the depletion of the ozone layer, pollute groundwater, contaminate the soil and harm plant and animal life." (by Deborah Mitchell, "Switch to Natural Cleaning Products,")
In essence, most cleaning products on the market today are dangerous for us, our families, our pets and the environment.
Even so-called "green" products may not be that green. A surprising number contain glycol ethers, phosphates and phthalates.
There are basic products that have been around for decades that are safe and effective. I'll bet our mothers and grandmothers would be comfortable with this list!
Simple ingredients like these will allow you to clean toilets, floors, drains, carpets, silver, etc.
For example use this all-purpose cleaner recipe from Earth Easy to clean windows, mirrors and shower stalls:
Mix 1/2 cup vinegar and 1/4 cup baking soda (or 2 teaspoons borax) into 1/2 gallon (2 liters) water.
Are you ready to make the switch? I am!
Go to Earth Easy for a complete list of ingredients and "recipes" to make your own cleaning products. (And please remember to dispose of your hazardous cleaning products through your community's hazardous waste collection program.)
Do you have any green cleaning tips?
The Sisters of Notre Dame support the Earth Charter with a particular focus on water.