At this time of year, when it starts to get cold we all yearn to be Warm & Cozy!  It’s that special feeling that makes winter such a wonderful time of year.

Can you just imagine…light shining in the window, the smell of coffee then rolling over and placing your feet on the floor? Justsheep feel the soft, warm wool carpet between your toes as you squish your feet around and grab your robe to lazily go towards the kitchen. Can you just picture your little one just learning to walk and oops…toppling over onto the lush, velvety wool plush in your living room? Wool carpet is the premier option for your flooring needs. It’s pure indulgence with peace of mind.

Healthy: Keep your family safe and sound with fire retardant, non-allergenic fibers that are naturally soil & moisture resistant, absorb contaminants and purify the air. Wow!

Wealthy: Excellent sound & thermal insulating factors cut your utility bills. Nice. With a 20-25 year lifespan, the resiliency of wool not only makes affordable but you end up saving in the long run.

Wise: Wool is socially conscious; not only biodegradable, recyclable, & rapidly renewable! Just makes good sense! (And no sheep are ever harmed in the making!)

Wool carpet has been around forever; no literally forever! The first wool carpets were made in 7000BC and we have not stopped using wool to adorn our floors ever since. Wool carpets have been produced in mass in America since 1791 with mills in Georgia. It’s a lifelong tradition that can’t be beat! It can be installed wall to wall, surged or bound with many different edge details and in many differing sizes.

It’s cold outside! You can’t beat the Benefits of Wool!

  • Naturally soil resistant and repellent
  • Absorbs contaminants and purifies the air
  • Naturally moisture resistant
  • Non-allergenic fiber Resistant to compression
  • Excellent thermal & sound insulator
  • Naturally flame retardant
  • More cost effective in the long-term; resilient, strong & durable fibers
  • Biodegradable, Recyclable, Rapidly Renewable resource
  • 20-25 yr. lifespan

Key components of the wool brands that we feature at Green Depot:

Most of the brands below have 5 – 50 style options available with multiple colors per style; all ranging in price depending upon style.

antrim-athenaANTRIM CARPET: Antrim is a line of undyed top quality wool. The undyed wool receives its color by the careful hand blending of different color wool fibers to give it the beautiful natural heathered colorways. Antrim Carpets does not use any chemicals or pesticides in any of their products. Their shipping containers are not fogged previous to shipping, and the very strict procedures they follow to insure the safety and cleanliness of their wool products does not make this a necessary step. The latex used in all of Antrim’s products is a natural latex extracted from a species of the rubber tree. Area rugs that Antrim manufactures are finished on the back with a pure cotton backing, and the ends are finished with hand serging using the same wool that the face of the product is made with. On the broadloom rolls, there is a very small polypropylene scrim as the very last layer of the backing. These materials used in the products a make a floor covering that is 99% natural. $6.29 – 19.99/SF http://www.antrimcarpet.com/

CAVAN CARPETS: Their carpet can also be blended with wool & bamboo or can be made of microfiber depending upon the style. What’s more is that I have ascertained that they use Action Backing on their carpets which is a name for a woven polypropylene secondary backing; the secondary backing being the one you see on the bottom. $7.29 – 21.29/SF http://www.cavancarpets.com/products.html

EARTH WEAVE CARPET: Earth Weave starts by using only pure wool. No dyes (New Catskill – OrganoSoftColors product has organic dye), No pesticides, nor stain protections. The primary backing is also an industry first combination of hemp and cotton. They chose to use the hardy hemp fiber, due to its durability, strength, and mold and mildew resistance. The all-natural primary backing is specifically designed to be used in their biodegradable flooring and is exclusive to Earth Weave. The wool yarns are locked into place with a natural adhesive that is derived from the rubber tree. This adhesive is completely biodegradable and nontoxic as well. Then for the back of the carpet they use a jute secondary. No Mothproofing used. $6.79 – 12.29/SF http://www.earthweave.com/

NATURE’S CARPET: The Nature’s Carpet collection consists of fine carpet pile made entirely from wool, a renewable resource. The wool is cleaned in a dedicated cleansed scour, and none of the chemicals employed in the mothproofing of other wool products are present. As a result, the clean scoured wool is totally biodegradable and even recyclable at the end of its long life as a floorcovering. Spinning of the wool takes place in a plant which has been carefully allocated for handling only 100% natural source material. The chemical latex used in regular carpet, is replaced with a nontoxic latex made from a natural rubber tree. The natural qualities of this latex are evident in the softness and flexibility of the carpet. Finally, the dual backing of the carpet is manufactured from natural jute, a vegetation fiber product produced without the use of pesticides or chemical fertilizers. The low percentage of chemicals, at every stage of the carpet’s manufacture and composition, means there is little or no toxic off-gassing. $4.69 – 9.69/SF http://www.naturescarpet.com/

Luxury home living roomUNIQUE CARPETS LTD: Most Unique products are manufactured with 100% pure wool. Unique Wool Carpets use Permethrin as a moth resistant agent. It is not only environmentally-friendly, it is an exceptionally effective and safe. Accepted world-wide and endorsed by the World Health Organization, it is also used to control insects on a variety of crops such as hops, cotton, fruit and vegetables. Permethrin is widely used in greenhouses, market gardens, and vineyards and is applied in a variety of ways. In regular use as described above, it has shown to be completely non-toxic to humans and, if ingested, passes through the system quickly and completely with no residual effects. However, when used as a moth resistant agent, Permethrin is used in much smaller quantities since it is not intended to control insects but rather as an agent that limits the ability of eggs to hatch or larvae to feed. It will not kill adult insects that walk across the carpet. There have been no reported cases worldwide of health related issues in humans from exposure to Permethrin. *Softer Than Sisal Naturals is not treated. Natural rubber latex is not used by any producers of quality broadloom carpets for two reasons: First, it is not an effective adhesive so de-lamination and poor tuft-bind are constant problems. Second; and more importantly, are serious health concerns. Natural rubber latex has over 100 known allergy related proteins and allergy to natural latex is a very common problem. Synthetic Latex is a petroleum-based by-product and is very effective as an adhesive, thereby increasing replacement intervals. Further, it possesses none of the health risks associated with natural rubber latex. Polypropylene is used as a primary backing and sometimes as a secondary backing in carpet manufacture. It is also a petroleum-based by-product and is so safe that it is commonly used as air filters, bandages, and protective netting in hospitals. Used in lieu of polypropylene as a primary backing in products marketed as 100% natural is burlap, which, like many natural fibers, contains allergens and, in moist and damp locations, is prone to rot, mildew, and mold. Formaldehyde is not used at all in any phase of carpet manufacturing (but may be present in some other household products). Many materials used to furnish or decorate the inside of homes emit small amounts of volatile products. Volatile Organic Compound, or VOC, emissions from carpets are among the lowest: only a fraction of those emitted by other materials used in new construction and renovation. $2.79 –14.69/SF http://www.uniquecarpetsltd.com/

GODFREY HIRST WOOL CARPETS: Godfrey Hirst, one of the largest wool manufacturers in the world, leads the market in style, color, performance, and quality with an extensive range of carpets to choose from. The yarn used in Godfrey Hirst carpets is 100% New Zealand wool, widely considered to be the best carpet-wool in the world. The yarn is semi-worsted, carded and tightly spun for excellent performance and longevity. Godfrey Hirst carpets have been independently tested for VOCs (Volatile Organic Compounds) and comply with Green Star criteria, thus minimizing the impact on indoor air quality. Godfrey Hirst has also independently tested for Green Label Plus compliance, and all products achieved emission levels for VOC far below the levels that Green Label Plus allows. Godfrey Hirst takes a proactive approach to environmental issues. $1.99 – 11.89/SF https://www.godfreyhirst.com/

DESIGN MATERIALS: Design Materials, Inc is a manufacturer of naturally made carpets and flooring. DMI (Design Materials International) exotic carpets are made from all-natural fibers: sheep and alpaca wool, mountain and sea grass, sisal, and coir from the coconut. Rugs are available in multiple sizes, styles, and textures, including wall-to-wall carpets and area rugs with customizable cloth bindings. Specially-designed Sisal cleaner and sealant available. DMI is known for their unique textures and durability. DMI carpets are made from rapidly renewable resources and environmentally friendly. $1.99 – 14.89/SF http://www.dmifloors.com/index_new.php

STANTON: The Natural Choice … Environmentally Friendly. Wool is the classic choice for floor covering material. Wool has been used for carpet making since ancient times and is still made to last with Stanton. Fine quality, all natural wool offers numerous advantages when used in flooring. It has been the standard in floorcovering for centuries and represents all the qualities that synthetic fibers try to only emulate. Stanton uses only the finest wools from around the world, which provide all the benefits that wool has to offer. When you are ready to make an investment in your home choose Stanton Wool Carpet. $1.99 – 9.29 http://www.stantoncarpet.com/

woolshire-paradise_southbeachWOOLSHIRE: Woolshire uses only the most superior raw materials, combined with the finest 100% New Zealand wool carpet fiber, to make all of their distinctive and highly fashionable carpets. All of Woolshire’s carpets exceed the rigorous test to qualify to carry the Wools of New Zealand prestigious brand label. Woolshire has latex and jute backing (soy backing upon request), and is certified as “Green Label Plus” for healthy indoor air quality by the Carpet and Rug Institute. 12 foot wide broadloom. $7.59 – 16.29/SF http://www.woolshire.com/

Take care of you and yours with luxurious wool carpeting.  Stay Warm & Cozy!

 

2015 is just around the corner and it is time to set our New Year’s resolutions. Winter time is the time of the year to get cozy with warm socks, hot-chocolate, and sit by the fire until Spring arrives. We at Green Depot believe that while winter is a great time for relaxation and spend it with our families, it is also a great time for fun, refreshing, and creative indoor home projects that will reduce your energy bills and make your home extra cozy. Here is a short list of projects that we recommend.

Clean Windows: Wash the inside of your windows with Green Depot’s Glass & Window, a biodegradable and nontoxic cleaner. It’s an effective glass cleaner that uses a plant-based non-ionic surfactant that easily breaks up grease and dirt. We also love what is not in it; alcohol, petroleum distillates, heavy metals, ammonia, bleach or formaldehyde to name a few.

Interior Paint: VOC-free paints are the best choice to paint interior walls. Colorhouse paints offers great coverage and have very low odor. Colorhouse performs like a premium conventional paint but we love it because it has no odor, harmful chemicals, or added solvents. Tinted with 0-VOC tints for a true VOC free color paint.

Install New Flooring: Freshen up your kitchen, hallways, or bedrooms with sustainable cork flooring that is easy to install from Natural Cork Floors. Cork floors have a warm and soft underfoot. If you’re looking for a harder surface then we recommend Foundations Bamboo Click flooring.

Insulate Pipes: Reduce your energy bill and heat loss by insulating hot water pipes.

Install Dual Flush Toilets: Toilets are a primary source of needless water waste. You can save water and money by installing a dual flush toilet. Caroma dual flush toilets offer superior water savings and performance.

Change To LED Light Bulbs: Making the switch to energy-efficient LED light bulbs can save money and energy. While LED’s are initially more expensive than traditional incandescent bulbs and CFL’s, you will save over time. LED’s are long lasting, more energy efficient, and mercury-free.

From everyone at Green Depot,

Happy Holidays!

Earth Day is celebrated every April 22, and it does a wonderful thing- it reminds us to stay (or get) focused on the environmental challenges we face.  First held in 1970, Earth Day was the brainchild of U.S. Senator Gaylord Nelson, who saw the opportunity to take the growing public concern about pollution of all kinds (some of us remember the intense air pollution over Los Angeles, the industrial pollution of waterways and skies around cities like Pittsburgh and Cleveland, and the growing impact of pollution on our wildlife back then) and focus that energy in a positive manner- not just be more aware, but to make sure to do something about it.

We’ve seen great things take place in the past 34 years- not to say there isn’t much more to do, but to recognize that we’ve gone from being relatively unaware and naïve to now knowing there are positive actions we can and need to take at all levels. Each individual step we take is a viable and important part of bringing us to the goal.

Green Depot uses our Green Filter to identify products that enable everyone to make the best choices for our planet.  We have a continually growing lineup of products to meet your needs- here’s just a few;

We have an exceptional selection of Flooring products, such as Marmoleum resilient tiles and sheets, Vida Cork and Capri Cork Tiles and Planks, Serafina, Nature’s Lodge and many other Hardwood Floors, and Wool Carpets from Bloomsburg, Woolshire along with a host of other fine manufacturers.

Whether it’s for rooftops, backyards, courtyards or balcony spaces, we now have remarkable choices that contribute to a better world. From rapidly renewable bamboo decking and tile products to durable and economical FSC Western Red Cedar to exotic FSC Tigerwood or composite  Trex decking,  our selection of products will satisfy the discriminating customer all while delivering on the commitment to being environmentally responsible.

And there’s no need to sacrifice style, color and innovation while being environmentally responsible by using Zero VOC paints. All of our paints from Yolo, Ivy Coatings, and AFM Safecoat provide excellent performance for both residential and commercial uses while positively contributing to our environment by eliminating Volitile Organic Compounds.

This year’s Earth Day global theme is Green Cities. We need to look both inward and outward to see the undeniable need for the world’s communities to become sustainable.  Without each of us, nothing big can, or will happen. This is a magnificent world we have the privilege to share and the responsibility to protect. Happy Earth Day to all of us.

 

Showing that green building has effectively moved into the mainstream, USA Today published an article this week titled “‘Green’ growth fuels an entire industry”. In it, they take a close look at the nationwide adoption of the United States Green Building Council’s (USGBC) green building certification program, LEED. The article reports that, today, over 200 government agencies now require that buildings meet LEED standards, and that the green construction market could reach $122 billion in the next 3 years. It goes on to say:

LEED has won wide acceptance among people who plan, design and construct buildings as a way to win environmental approval and boost profit. There are 13,500 LEED-certified commercial buildings in the U.S., and another 30,000 have applied for LEED approval.

Offering encouraging news about the nation’s growing awareness of the importance of green building and energy efficiency, the article also takes a look at the evolution of LEED standards and the role that the building industry plays in the process. It is encouraging to see these topics being discussed on such a mainstream platform as USA Today. It shows just how far we have come in the last 10 years, and we see it as a clear indication that the green building movement, while continually evolving, is here to stay.

To see the USGBC’s response to the USA Today article, click here.

This Holiday Season as you look for gifts or supplies for the children in your life, you’ll probably consider the child’s age and interests, and the quality and durability of the product. It is much less common to consider the safety of the toy – most people assume that there are government regulations in place to protect us. Unfortunately, the reality is that, as a country, we still lack consensus on how to approach regulation of chemicals in consumer products – even those intended for children.

There is currently legislation at both the federal level and in many states seeking to clarify strategies to protect our children from toxic chemical exposure. The Safe Chemicals Act of 2011, introduced to the House by Sen. Frank Lautenberg is one. Another is the Child-Safe Product Act, currently under consideration in New York State. It is notable that parents, health care professionals and educators are not the only ones showing support for this kind of legislation – many businesses are too. Today, Green Depot Founder Sarah Beatty testified at a New York State Assembly hearing on the Child-Safe Product Act. In her testimony she explained why businesses should welcome regulation of this kind:

The Child-Safe Products Act protects workers in manufacturing facilities, nearby communities, and all consumers from toxic chemical exposure. It reduces the potential for product makers’ legal liability for illness linked to toxic chemicals, and it increases investor confidence that they will be free from:
• Worker’s compensation claims from occupational illness linked to on the job toxic chemical exposure; and
• A tarnished public image, resulting in decreased sales, suffered by so many brands in the past few years due to contamination.

According to the American Sustainable Business Council the economic benefits of chemical regulation include: cutting the costs of hazardous waste storage and disposal; improving worker protection; decreasing health care costs, and future liabilities; and supporting market trends that transform supply chains that result in better businesses.

There are many arguments in favor of this kind of legislation – and support and awareness are growing across the country. This time next year, as we are shopping for meaningful gifts that will delight our favorite youngsters, let’s hope that we won’t still be having to wonder and worry about the possibility of lurking toxins!

Click here for more information on The Safe Chemicals Act of 2011.

Click here for more about the Child-Safe Products Act under consideration in New York State.

Christmas is almost upon those of us celebrating it this year.  At this point, many of us have already bought our gifts.  Some we’ve bought this year are very environmentally-friendly; others, decidedly less-so.  For many of us, struggling through the post-recession haze, buying gifts this year has been a challenge; for others, we find ourselves worried about how much more waste or carbon we might be producing during the holiday season.

And every year, we always forget to buy gifts for a few folks.  Sudden realizations may lead to midnight rushes to dollar stores or box stores for a last-minute gift.  Having remembered to get something for our loved one relieves our guilt, but having bought something environmentally-damaging might plague our conscience.

A recent New York Times piece details a growing trend in gift-giving this year: bartering.

To many, the idea of bartering may be unthinkable – the idea of buying something on-the-fly, and inexpensively, from a Wal-Mart or Target almost seems preferable to re-gifting something that might be used, or giving a skill instead of something material.

But consider, for a moment, what the environmental impacts of those last-minute, non-green products might be.  According to carbonfootprint.com, the carbon footprint of a brand new gift can be…

30 kg of CO2 for an mp3 player.
70 kg of CO2 or more for an electric kitchen appliance.
20 kg of CO2 or less for a board game.
5-10 kg of CO2 for a book.

So, if a green product isn’t an option this year – either because it’s now too late, or because the recession has us all tightening our budgets – consider that sharing a skill or re-gifting with someone might be a good way to share this holiday.

As the Times notes, the growing phenomenon of bartering – either skills or products – is closely related to the recession – and its practice has been growing in recent years.  According to the National Association of Resale and Thrift Shops, net sales are up this year from 13% for last year; and according to scientific polls, 26% of Americans said they were bartering products and skills this holiday season, up more than double since 2000, when the question was first posited.

But the practice of sharing a skill or re-gifting a product this year can have an environmental purpose, as well.  It reduces demand for new production, lowering carbon emissions from the manufacturing process, and it keeps less-wanted gifts out of teetering landfills.  (Consider how many of those last-minute, cheap gifts we received either broke quickly, or were generally unwanted, and wound up in the garbage bound for the landfill.  The thought is certainly sobering.)  So this year, instead of rushing out last-minute for a gift that’s probably going to the landfill, considering a barter of skills, or a re-gifting from last year.  Your wallet, the earth, and perhaps most importantly, your friends and family, will thank you.

For items like green products, green books, and green insulation, you can always visit http://www.greendepot.com. image of books by flickr user nedrichards; image of landfill by flickr user d’arcy norman.