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This Earth Day, Reduce, Reuse, Recycle - and Respect

Submitted by: Green America

Categories: Environment

Posted: Apr 22, 2003 – 12:00 AM EST


National Green Pages businesses help consumers care for the Earth and each other

WASHINGTON, DC - Most people already know that "reduce, reuse, recycle" is the phrase to keep in mind when working to live in harmony with the Earth. These days, more and more consumers are including another word: respect. Consumers want to respect the workers who make the products they buy every day. Co-op America's National Green Pages lists more than 2,000 businesses that meet all four of these goals by working in ways that help people and the planet alike.

Everyone can help workers and the environment by supporting socially and environmentally responsible businesses. Here are a few examples of the kinds of people- and planet-friendly products consumers can buy this Earth Day and every day:

** Fair Trade Certified Coffee - While conventional coffee production means low wages for farmers and environmental devastation in coffee-growing areas, the fair trade system provides fair prices to farmers and allows them to maintain their lands and continue using traditional, environmentally friendly growing techniques.

** Organic clothing - Growing clothing fibers can be hard on planet; for instance, conventional cotton cultivation uses large amounts of pesticides, which are harmful to the workers who pick the cotton as well as to the planet. Clothing made from organic fiber is an excellent alternative.

** Nontoxic cleaners - Many common household cleaners contain harmful chemicals - which can cause health problems in those who use them and contaminate groundwater in the places where they're used. Using nontoxic cleaning products helps keep people and water supplies healthy.

** Organic, local produce - Conventional agriculture too often involves large amounts of pesticides, low wages and unhealthy working conditions for farm workers, and transportation of food across long distances. Consumers can ensure that fruits and vegetables are healthy for workers, the planet, and their families when they purchase organic, local foods from CSAs (Community Supported Agriculture) and local co-ops.

By supporting businesses that reduce, reuse, recycle, and respect, consumers can help ensure a healthy future for people and the planet alike. Responsible businesses selling products such as those described above can be found at the Green Pages Online (www.greenpages.org), or by ordering a paper copy of Co-op America's National Green Pages for $10.95 at 800-58-GREEN.

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About Co-op America

Co-op America is the national nonprofit consumer, business and investor organization working to harness economic power - the strength of consumers, investors, businesses and the marketplace - to create a socially just and environmentally sustainable society. Celebrating 20 years of service to people and the planet, Co-op America provides resources to consumers and business to help choose sustainable consumption practices; shift their purchasing and investing to socially and environmentally responsible companies; and use their power as consumers, investors and businesses to encourage America to change the way we do business to one that respects people and the planet.

For more information, please contact:

Erica Hesch Anstey Co-op America
Phone: +1-202-872-5344


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