JUST Like paper,
only IT'S better
These paper plate lookalikes are long-lasting,
reusable melamine plastic. So is the scallop shell.
$1.25-$4 at Pier 1.
When reusing isn't saving the Earth
Sometimes reusing old building materials is a smart idea. Sometimes it's not. Don't reuse old toilets or used appliances that waste energy or water compared with their newly manufactured counterparts. Like that ancient refrigerator you keep in the garage to chill sodas and beer — get rid of it! It's a huge energy hog that may be costing you $100 a year. More tips on greening existing homes are at www.greenhomeguide.org, the Web site of the U.S. Green Building Council.
Teach kids to conserve, recycle
From 6 a.m. to noon Tuesday, the Disney Channel will tell kids all about Earth Day. Characters on all the shows will remind the kids to turn off lights and faucets and to recycle. On Handy Manny, the cartoon handyman and his friends the tools will learn about solar energy and will recycle glass, plastic, metal and bottles.
Glass caps for glass bottles
Skip the plastic, go for glass. These one-liter glass bottles, with glass caps, are by Italian design house Seletti, available at www.lekkerhome.com; $40 each.
Phosphate-free for the dishwasher
Amid the landslide of products claiming green bona fides these days: Palmolive's eco+ gel dishwasher detergent says it's the first mass-marketed dishwasher detergent formulated without phosphates. Phosphates promote the growth of algae in waterways. It comes in lemon splash, citrus apple splash and lavender splash; suggested retail is $3.09 to $3.39 for a 45-ounce bottle, at the usual locations: supermarkets, discount stores, mass merchants.
Compiled by Times homes and garden editor Judy Stark
Take green from fad to ingrained
"Builders believe green building has legs. I'm sorry, builders are wrong. . . . The big shame is that green is a fad. It should not be a fad. It needs to be continuing, regular, be part of building science . . . The term green is used so often, it loses meaning. We have to send out the message to homeowners that it's not about building a green home, it's about building a better home. . . . It's smarter."
Paul Deffenbaugh, editorial director, Professional Builder magazine