Green Depot Mercer Rug: A luxurious, hand-tufted, cut-pile rug in rich colors, and various sizes. GoodWeave Certified.

Do you know who made that area rug you’re about to buy? There can be a lot of questions when it comes to judging if a rug is sustainable or not. From what it’s made of, to where it comes from, to who made it – there is not often a lot of information available! Fortunately, there is an organization that is working to shed some light in the industry: GoodWeave International.

GoodWeave International (GWI, formerly known as RugMark) is an organization working to end child labor and increase sustainable practices in rug manufacturing. Taking a stand against child labor in the rug industry is important because children employed making rugs can develop spinal injuries, respiratory problems, and impaired vision as a result of the work. In addition to physical ailments, the lack of educational opportunities for these children can also have a lifetime’s worth of repercussions. The goal that drives GWI is simple, yet aggressive: to grow demand for GoodWeave certification so that rug manufacturers around the world will embrace socially responsible practices and end the use of child labor in the rug industry.

To be certified, a company must apply and meet GWI’s strict standards like requiring employees to be 15 years of age or older, fair labor practices and healthy, sustainable working environments. To make sure that a company remains true to their high standards after being certified, GWI sends inspectors to licensed manufacturers to visit on a random, yet regular basis. The GWI uses the funds raised through its certification program to provide educational opportunities for former child laborers.

All Green Depot Area Rugs carry GoodWeave Certification. Hand woven in India out of the finest natural fibers like wool, hemp and jute, each beautiful creation is certified by GoodWeave International! All are 100% biodegradable, made from renewable materials, vegetable dyes, and are child labor free.

Whatever the style of your home, an area rug can instantly update the mood and look of any room in the house. We carry a pattern for everyone; from the bold, geometric “Ikat Rug” to the fun, imaginative “Smart Car Rug,” ideal for children. These are great for the person looking for stylish, sustainable, and savvy decor.

   
Green Depot Ikat Rug: These handwoven, wool area rugs feature designs that are as dramatic as these rugs are sustainable. Green Depot Smart Car Rug: Perfect for a child’s room! Made with exclusively natural materials. Green Depot Delancy Rug: This plant fiber area rug is handwoven in a contrasting black and natural diamond pattern.

 

Green Depot Area Rugs are now 45% off and can be found at our Seattle and Portland locations. Shipping is available!

Zoe Bloom contributed to this post.

Install Tyroc over new or seasoned concrete

Tyroc panels are just 1/2 inch thick

Let’s face it, choosing flooring for basements can be tricky! Concrete slabs, moisture issues, low ceilings, and un-even surfaces frequently combine to limit your floor covering options to carpet and well, carpet. Many people are happy with their carpeted basements, but if you’ve been longing to install a wood floor downstairs, Green Depot has the answer!

The key to this liberating development is Tyroc Underlayment. Tyroc is an engineered dual-layered subflooring system. The bottom layer is a waterproof, diamond-pattern, moisture-blocking membrane made of recycled rubber and plastic. This moisture barrier works better than a simple layer of plastic sheeting because it makes space between the cement and the flooring surface that allows water vapor to escape. The top surface of each panel is made of non-toxic Magnesium Oxide, a material that is exceptionally well suited for basements because it will not propagate mold or mildew and is fire, water and pest resistant. These panels are superior to a simple wood underlayment because they won’t swell or delaminate and they’ll remain stable as moisture and temperature levels fluctuate.

Installing the ½ inch thick Tyroc panels over your basement floor will help to level the surface of your floor, without costing you headroom. Once it’s down, you can choose linoleum, hardwood, cork, ceramic tile – and yes, even carpet if you like! Whatever flooring you choose, this underlayment will ensure that your floor surface is dry, warm, and quiet.

Serafina Flooring - Engineered for Stability

For added stability in a basement where hardwood flooring is desired, we recommend choosing an engineered floor like our Serafina flooring line. Engineered floors feature a multi-layered cross-grain construction that cuts down on the expansion and contraction of boards. To protect your indoor-air-quality, be sure to choose a product that is made with no added urea-formaldehyde!

Green Holiday Entertaining

November 24th, 2011 | Posted by Lesia in Air Quality | Green Products | Living Green | Waste Reduction - (Comments Off on Green Holiday Entertaining)

Are you looking for ways to make your holidays more sustainable? From reducing waste, to increasing energy efficiency, to reducing toxicity there are tons of ways to make our celebrations more sustainable. Our friends Corey and Lynn over at Celebrate Green have lots of creative ideas for greening Christmas, Kwanzaa and Hanukkah.  Another great resource is Practically Green where you can find tips on avoiding BPA in your holiday meals, green gift ideas and more! Below are some of the green solution available at Green Depot! You can see all of our eco-friendly Holiday Supplies by clicking here.

Holiday LED String Lights
Light up your home this Holiday season with LED lights, the energy efficient version that uses up to 80% less energy to operate than traditional incandescent lights. Use them indoors or out to brighten your holidays

 

 

Dinuba Stainless Steel Water Container
This beautiful stainless steel container is stylish and functional. Use it for storing and serving water at events, or for everyday use on your countertop or in your fridge. This is a perfect alternative to the classic tub of plastic water bottles – even better it’s BPA-free! Great for water – or your favorite festive beverage! Comes in 5L and 15L sizes.

 

Compostable Cups
These compostable 12oz cups are made of Kraft Paper coated with corn-based lining. Great for hot or cold beverages – you can use them for hot apple cider, or rum punch. At the end of your party, unlike those red plastic cups, these don’t have to go to the landfill.

 

Juniper Ridge Room Spray
Few things evoke the feeling of holiday more than the fresh scent of pine trees. Juniper Ridge’s Room Spray was made to capture the smell of the forests of the Cascade Mountain range using real, wild-harvested botanicals, no toxic or artificial chemicals.

 

For more, browse all of our eco-friendly Holiday Supplies by clicking here.

The new zHome development in Issaquah, WA.

Several years ago, about 20 miles east of Seattle, Washington, a goal was set to build a model for 21st century homes – and the zHome project was born. September saw the completion of this state-of-the art project, and it is revolutionary on almost every level. Zero-Net Energy The buildings have built-in energy efficiencies to help minimize waste – like heat recovering technology – and that accounts for most of the lowered energy use in these homes. The buildings have solar-panels that generate and offset the remaining energy use to achieve net zero energy use and net zero CO2 emissions over the course of a year. Water Conservation zHomes are slated to use just 40% of the average water use of a typical home.  All 10 units have successfully earned WaterSense New Home Certification. These are the first homes in the State, and among the first in the nation, to receive this recognition. The units save water in a number of ways: high-efficiency water fixtures and appliances, rain-garden landcaping, and rain-water capture for use in flushing toilets and laundry. The zHomes are also the first in the Nation to win Salmon Safe certification for their handling of stormwater runoff. Sustainable Materials Use Each unit is finished with low-toxic, eco-friendly and durable materials from floor to ceiling to inside the walls. The bulk of the materials in the project come from within 500 miles of the site. They also used recycled materials in finishes like tiles and countertops; FSC-certified woods for decking, handrails, siding and more; and super-durable materials for siding and roofing to minimize frequency of maintenance and replacement. On top of that, 90% of the construction waste from the building of these homes was recycled or reused. There are many more exceptional qualities to the zHome project that make it one of the most innovative developments in the country today. Visit http://z-home.org to learn more! This project is a model for 21st century homes – they’ve proved that these ideas are scalable – let’s hope they aren’t unique for long! Click here to visit our website.



Caroma has long been the world’s leader in dual flush toilets, and now they have taken water-savings to a whole new level. By incorporating a hand-washing basin right into the tank of their toilet, Caroma has made it easy for people to conserve even more. 

 They started with a High-Efficiency Dual Flush Toilet (two flush options: 0.8 gallons for liquids, and 1.28 gallons for solids) and changed the design of the tank so that water refilling the tank is first routed through a faucet at the top, making that clean water available for hand washing. As the water from your hand washing goes down the drain of the basin, it goes directly into tank to be used next time you flush the toilet.

 On top of making use of hand-washing-wastewater for flushing, Caroma dual flush toilets use less water to begin with. With an average flush of just 1 gallon, these Dual Flush toilets reduce water consumption by 40-70 percent. Just imagine the water savings when the water from your hand washing gets recycled on top of it all!

Hard to imagine? Here’s an image (right) of the inside of the tank so you can see how it works.

 The Caroma Profile is a certified High Efficiency, WaterSense toilet – and has received the Popular Mechanics “Product Breakthrough” award for innovative design and engineering.

For more information on the Caroma Profile click here!

My own educational adventures have been long.  I earned my B.A. from Oberlin College in 2007, and then went back to school at Columbia University for my M.A. for 2009 – 2010.  After a year off, I’m heading off for a Ph.D program in environmental anthropology at the end of the month.

Between frantically preparing for my move and ensuring that I am properly enrolled and registered for new courses, I’ve had to think through what I’ll need for the upcoming year, and how I can source what I need ethically and in an environmentally-responsible way.

So, below, here are some of the ideas I’ve come up with by perusing the Green Depot website.  I hope this comes in handy for anyone getting ready to head back to school – whether for elementary school, high school, college, or grad school.

GREEN DEPOT SOLUTIONS

TerraCycle Straw Paper: Roughly four billion trees are felled every year for the production of printer paper, which poses a significant threat to the environment and a massive contribution to climate change.  This paper is instead made from straw – the kind used for animal bedding as a byproduct of straw production – and is a much more sustainable material for paper-making than wood.  This paper is fully compatible with laser printers, ink jet printers, and copy machines.

Hero Bags Pig Lunch Sack: Cute!  These lunch bags are made from organic cotton, has a handy cotton carrying strap, and a stylish silk screen “butchery artwork” design of a happy pig.  The bag stands upright with a flat bottom, and it is large enough to hold a large sandwich, a tall beverage, and multiple snacks.  It is machine washable, and should be line-dried.

Ecosystem Flexicover Journals: The journals are excellent for expressing your thoughts or taking notes in class.  They are made of 100% post-consumer recycled paper (the best kind of recycled paper you can purchase) and contain 192 smooth, bright-white eco-friendly pages.  The books come with a back pocket on the inside cover, an organic cotton bookmark, perforated pages, and an elastic enclosure.  Plus, there is an ID number in the back of every book that allows you to track where parts of the journal were made via ecosystem’s website, and resources for learning where to recycle them.

Design Ideas Recycled Newspaper Pencils: A truly ingenious idea, these pencils are made entirely from recycled newspapers that are wound tightly around a no. 2 pencil lead.  Design Ideas ads an adhesive, presses them into a barrel shape, and the pencil turns out to be just as strong as a standard one constructed from wood.  Newsprint images from an English edition Chinese newspaper are visible on the barrel surface, and these can be sharpened just as you would a regular pencil.  They come in a set of twelve.

Decomposition Books: As straightforward as they are classic, these “decomposition books” are constructed from 100% post-consumer waste recycled paper.  They are made with bio gas derived energy, and feature several aesthetically-appealing designs.  They’re college ruled with 80 sheets per book, at 7.5″ x 9.75″ and produced in the United States.  At $4.95, they’re a great bargain for a green back-to-school product.

Solar Backpack: A truly remarkable item. the Solar Back Pack was designed specifically to efficiently charge virtually all handheld electronic devices via built-in solar panels and a battery.  The bag itself is built from a sturdy recycled PET fabric (that usually comes from soda bottles) and has a spacious main compartment with four interior pockets, plus space for glasses, a laptop, and a front pocket for holding charging devices.  A universal USB battery stores power for anytime use, indoors or outdoors, sunny or cloudy, and can be charged even when sun is not readily available.  When the sun is out, the solar panels go to work and charge the USB battery themselves.  The battery can be fully charged from 7 hours of contact with direct sun, or 5.5 hours from a USB port or optional DC or AC.  It’s even capable of charging a smart phone with just 4 hours of sun.  Comes with a 2-year warranty on pack and panels, and a 1-year warranty on the battery.

For green building materials, like eco insulation, as well as many other green products for a sustainable lifestyle, visit http://www.greendepot.com.