Green Store

The other day a promotional email from Green Cricket landed in my inbox wanting to me to blog about their store. I’m not keen on providing what is essentially free advertising to sites, but this one is local to me (Toronto) and they have a stringent measurement of ‘green’. It’s good to see retailers strongly embrace the environment.

There are many green stores out there and I suggest you find one that’s near you so you can bike there. Of course, the most obvious way to be a green shopper is to not buy anything you don’t need and be conscious of your purchases.

Green Cricket assesses every product offered on our site against our own quality criteria, and provides full transparency of “what’s green” about each. Our Green Rating System uses a range of environmental factors that span the product lifecycle. We have grouped this System into five main criteria to evenly assess each product. Part of this evaluation includes the extent to which these products have obtained third-party certifications from government or standards organizations. We have chosen only those products that, based on this assessment, are consistent with our commitment to bringing the best in green products to you.

Green Cricket

Fair Trade Jewellery

Blood diamonds have been a part of the jewellery industry for too long, and now FTJCo in Toronto is “North America’s original certified fairtrade fine jeweller”.

It’s great to see a jeweller that understands that fair trade and social justice can be a key part of their business. If you need new jewellery you should always try to buy from sources that are people and earth friendly.

Certified participants in the Condoto Community Council’s Oro Verde initiative, the source for our metals, receive a guaranteed minimum price, a social premium, and the opportunity to empower themselves through a stronger base for bargaining, better knowledge of market values, and the possibility of sourcing pre-financing from prospective buyers.

Fairtrade Fairmined certification provides an incentive for sustainable mining, keeping communities together.

The Condoto miners use no toxic chemicals such as cyanide or mercury, key causes of many challenges associated with industrial mining and prospecting activities.

Oro Verde’s environmentally friendly approach and the Fairtrade Fairmined certification place the responsibility for land stewardship in the hands of these miners, balancing it with tangible incentives and rewards for minimum-impact practices.

Check out the fair trade jewellery here.

How to Stop Shopping

One reporter has joined a growing movement of people who have sworn off buying new things. It’s a good read and a good introduction into how one can change their shopping habits to help our friendly planet.

Here are the ground rules: No buying anything new, with three exceptions – food, booze and health essentials, like medicine and toilet paper. Mary-Margaret suggests we could use leaves, but I think she’s joking.

Also accepted: Second-hand purchases. Value Village, Craigslist, vintage shops are all fair game, as the official point is to lighten our environmental load. We are in Planet Saving Mode, not Shopaholics Anonymous.

Borrowing is encouraged.

It’s an easy case to make after the stuff-gorging of Christmas. Torontonians, on average, throw 3.7 kilograms into the household trash each week – not including compost or recycling – according to city statistics. And for every garbage bin we pack, another 70 were filled to make the stuff we’re throwing out, according to American garbage guru Annie Leonard.

So, by boycotting new things for three months, I personally will keep more than 900 bags of garbage out of landfills or incinerators around the world. Not to mention the coal-fired electricity involved in making the stuff, the truck fumes, the mining and logging …

Read the rest of the article.

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