In order to be accepted into the green technology product club, a product needs to meet certain criteria. The chief among those are:
- The product should be energy efficient, highly durable and not require regular maintenance
- Manufactured with recycled materials or materials that are considered to be sustainable and renewable
- Not containing chemicals that contribute to ozone depletion, toxic compounds and does not produce any toxic by-products
- Made by locally sourced manufacturers
- Products used for manufacturing should be either partly or wholly biodegradable
Green technology can be broadly divided into two groups; manufactured products and raw materials.
Some examples of commonly used green technology products and raw materials are:
- Recycled plastics and wood
- Wool & leather
- Packed earth
- Filtered water
- Eco-friendly filtration methods
- Wind and solar energy production
- Eco-friendly plastic substitutes
- Paper made from sustainable sources
- Recycled fabric
Not surprisingly, any raw material that can be grown, is considered to be the most environmentally friendly product. Examples of this are cotton, hemp, bamboo and any other quickly growing plant used in manufacturing. Hence, cotton clothes, rope, paper, flooring and roofing materials are just a few examples of high-use objects that can be considered as green technology products. The idea here is to create using carbon neutral products. In a nutshell, carbon neutral means you are not adding more CO2 or carbon dioxide into the atmosphere or nature, than is already there.
Bamboo, Cotton, and Hemp; The Superstars of the Green Technology World
One of the biggest changes that came about in the last four or five decades was mass production of goods. As consumerism kicked into full gear after WW2, the emphasis from long lasting quality products to disposable products became the new reality. This is largely due to the easy availability of plastic and other synthetic materials. Now, it is time to take things full circle and go back to the good old days. Fortunately, this is happening largely due to three basic raw materials; bamboo, cotton and hemp.
Bamboo: There are several reasons why bamboo is an amazing product. First of all, it is strong for its weight and grows incredibly fast, especially compared to trees. It does not need to be replanted since it grows again from its shoots and does not need fertilizers and pesticides. From flooring to baby clothing, it is possible to make it with bamboo.
Cotton: Cotton needs no introduction, since it touches our lives, literally, on a daily basis, in the form of clothes and bed sheets. However, the art of processing cotton organically became lost. The trend now is to bring back organic cotton, from farm to store shelves.
Hemp: Just like bamboo, hemp is also a strong, durable raw material that grows fast and is easily replenish-able. It can also be grown without fertilizers and pesticides. Perhaps the best thing about hemp is that processing it into a usable product is very easy, and does not require any chemicals.