Innovative and Sustainable Scrubs and Apparel

Posts tagged “Sustainability

Just-style management briefing: Closing the loop on recycled textiles

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With fast fashion and quick turnover key commercial ingredients of today’s garment and apparel industry, excess textile production is prompting the sector to gravitate towards more recycling and re-use of materials, to conserve energy, increase sustainability and lower raw material costs. (more…)


Hospital-Acquired Infections

Healthcare-associated infections (HAI) are defined as infections not present and without evidence of incubation at the time of admission to a healthcare setting. As a better reflection of the diverse healthcare settings currently available to patients, the term healthcare-associated infections replaced old ones such as nosocomial, hospital-acquired or hospital-onset infections.[1] Within hours after admission, a patient’s flora begins to acquire characteristics of the surrounding bacterial pool. Most infections that become clinically evident after 48 hours of hospitalization are considered hospital-acquired. Infections that occur after the patient is discharged from the hospital can be considered healthcare-associated if the organisms were acquired during the hospital stay. (more…)


Hospitals Go Green to Save Money and Save Lives

Spalding Hospital sits on Boston Harbor in Charlestown. (Photo: Robin Lubbock/WBUR)

In an effort to stabalize energy costs hospitals nationwide are investing in energy efficiency and renewable energy. Host Steve Curwood checks out the innovative design of the new Spaulding hospital with John Messervy Director of Capital and Facilities Planning for Partners’ HealthCare. (more…)


Sustainable Textiles Possible from Slime, Study Says

Atsuko NegishiNews Release

University of Guelph researcher Atsuko Negishi is investigating a novel and unlikely source of natural fibres that may one day lessen our dependence on petroleum: hagfish slime.

The textile industry needs an affordable, sustainable alternative to oil-based polymers, and a recent study shows that hagfish slime protein threads have the potential to be spun and woven into novel biomaterials.

Hagfishes are an ancient group of eel-like, bottom-dwelling animals that have remained relatively unchanged for more than 300 million years. When threatened, hagfishes secrete a gelatinous slime containing mucous and tens of thousands of protein threads. These threads belong to the “intermediate filament” family of proteins, and they have remarkable mechanical properties that rival those of spider silks. (more…)


Sustainable or Gross? 7 Tips to Re-wear Clothes Before Washing

In this article, Organic Authority brings you 7 deciding factors for what to wash and how often. A twist on sustainable clothing! Enjoy

View full article here: http://www.stumbleupon.com/su/1xK9Sj/www.organicauthority.com/sanctuary/7-tips-to-rewear-clothes-before-washing.html

clothes line

Image: Magic Madzik

Someone had to ask, right? Is it sustainable or just plain gross to re-wear outfits before washing clothes?

The average American household does some 400 loads of laundry per year, using as much as 40 gallons of water per load, according to the Consumer Energy Center. With fresh water becoming a seriously scarce resource, that’s a huge number to take into consideration, especially when clothes are frequently and unnecessarily washed. In the not-so-olden days just a century ago, it was a given that clothes were going to be worn several times, if not dozens before washing. And even then, they were low-impact hand-washed and air-dried.

The home washing machine drastically changed all that in the 1950s. Suddenly, we could have clean clothes with little effort—a necessity that became a luxury—but in our modern efforts to decrease our consumption of resources and our impact on the environment, it’s important that we choose to develop new habits. We didn’t always look at the bottom of containers to determine whether or not they were recyclable, now it’s a habit for many of us. So is shopping at local farmers markets to support our regional economy and decrease the distance between where our food is grown and our mouths. But what about what we wear? Is just using an environmentally friendly detergent enough? Check this list of tips on re-wearing clothes to decrease your impact on the environment and make your clothes last longer:

View the 7 tips here: http://www.stumbleupon.com/su/1xK9Sj/www.organicauthority.com/sanctuary/7-tips-to-rewear-clothes-before-washing.html


How to Distinguish the Green from the Greenwash

This article is courtesy of Triple Pundit

Eco Friendly Dog

Pepper – the Eco Friendly Dog

By Gia Machlin

This is Part I of a two-part post on how consumers can use Eco Labels to distinguish the green from the greenwash.

After years of making fun of dog owners in the city, I became one myself: a city dweller with a canine friend. Meet Pepper. Of course now I think having a dog in the city is the best thing since sliced bread, but I still feel somewhat ridiculous picking up after Pepper does her business on the sidewalk. Luckily we have those tidy little poop bags to help us out and keep the mess to a minimum. I realize that using an old newspaper is probably more eco friendly, and I may just switch to that, but as I was getting used to this dog walking concept, using the bags just seemed much less disgusting.

So I walked into the pet store and asked for biodegradable poop bags, and the clerk pointed me to some bags hanging in a display case. On the packaging, there was a picture of the earth with some recycling arrows around it and the words “earth friendly.” If I didn’t happen to be in the sustainability field, I might have taken this information at face value and bought the bags. But I didn’t recognize the symbol as representing a reputable eco-label and I looked further. Nowhere on the packaging did the product claim to be biodegradable, compostable, or made of renewable materials. In fact, the bags were, as far as I could tell, no different than any other plastic poop bag. But I’m sure the manufacturer fooled a few customers into believing their product was “greener” than the next. How is this possible?

It’s possible, because there is very little regulation around what companies can claim as “green,” “eco friendly,” or “earth friendly.” Not that there isn’t any regulation – in 1992 the Federal Trade Commission came out with the Guides for the Use of Environmental Marketing Claims also known as the “Green Guide“. This regulation has been updated several times, and in October 2010 the FTC proposed major updates to this section of the Federal Register (the proposed updates have yet to be finalized). So this is all good, and the FTC has started to enforce these rules, but the rules are new, and in some cases unclear, and the door is still open for all the “greenwashers” and their claims for now.

So, as a consumer, knowing that the door is still open for marketers to make all kinds of green claims, how do you know what’s green? Well the first thing to know is that nothing is truly “green.” Everything we buy has some kind of environmental footprint. A product’s footprint is calculated using many factors: the material used to make it, the energy used to manufacture it, the gasoline used to transport it, the electricity needed to operate it, and the waste created when ultimatelydisposing of it. But a product can be “greener” than another. (The most environmentally friendly option is not to buy anything new at all and reuse what’s already out there!) So how do we know what’s “greener?” Currently, we at EcoPlum believe the best option is to buy products that have are made of recycled materials, have been certified green by independent organizations or that have earned a reputable eco-label.

Now, how do you know which Eco-Label is reputable? That’s the topic of Part II of this post. But, for now, here is a list of eco-labels we have found be run by independent non-profit or government third parties that appear to have no vested interest in the products or companies they certify.

[Note: the EcoPlum Online Boutique carries only eco friendly products that have been certified green, have a third party eco-label, or are made of recycled/upcycled materials.]

Gia is the President and CEO of EcoPlum, Where it Pays to Buy Green®.  EcoPlum is the green shopping rewards site with eco friendly products and green living ideas that makes it fun, easy and rewarding to go green. Under its loyalty program, buying green at EcoPlum online earns EcoChipz rewards points, good for coupons in its shop or donations to environmental causes.


Spring is here! Now, how to store all this fresh produce without using plastic?

How to Store Vegetables & Fruit Without Plastic

So you’ve got all these great fruits and vegetables and now we’re going to help you keep them at their freshest with these tips. These tips are from the Berkley Farmer’s Market which is a Zero Waste market! Here is a printable PDF of their original tip sheet. In the works here at Washington’s Green Grocer is a switch from plastic bags (although we use as few as we can get away with, while still keeping your produce from getting battered on it’s way to you) to only recyclable paper and reuseable cloth bags!

 

HOW TO STORE VEGETABLES WITHOUT PLASTIC

Artichokes‐ place in an airtight container sealed, with light moisture.

Asparagus‐ place them loosely in a glass or bowl upright with water at room temperature. (Will keep for a week outside the fridge)

Avocados‐ place in a paper bag at room temp. To speed up their ripening‐ place an apple in the bag with them.

Arugula‐ arugula, like lettuce, should not stay wet! Dunk in cold water and spin or lay flat to dry. Place dry arugula in an open container, wrapped with a dry towel to absorb any extra moisture.

Basil‐ is difficult to store well. Basil does not like the cold, or to be wet for that matter. The best method here is an airtight container/jar loosely packed with a small damp piece of paper inside‐left out on a cool counter.

Beans, shelling‐ open container in the fridge, eat ASAP. Some recommend freezing them if not going to eat right away

Beets‐ cut the tops off to keep beets firm, (be sure to keep the greens!)by leaving any top on root vegetables draws moisture from the root, making them loose flavor and firmness. Beets should be washed and kept in and open container with a wet towel on top.

Beet greens‐ place in an airtight container with a little moisture.

Broccoli‐ place in an open container in the fridge or wrap in a damp towel before placing in the fridge.