ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Spring Means Green

Updated on July 8, 2009
Spring means green
Spring means green

Along with "Spring Forward" and "Spring Cleaning," this time of year is also one in which people make more of an effort to go green. Maybe its the reminder Mother Nature sends us when she pushes fresh new shoots from the ground and buds appear on the trees. I must say that I'm finding that Spring Means Green just about anywhere I look.

But while green is good, some would say that its over done. "Greenwashing" is one claim that can be made when a product is sold with a label of being environmentally-friendly when its not so in reality. It is true, you do need to learn to be a smart consumer.

In order to sort your way through the numerous terms that are used for green, let's review some of the most commonly used monikers. We'll go over the differences between sustainable, fair-trade, natural and certified organic. Learn what it takes to get a "Green Seal" on a product, too.

Its clear that Spring Means Green. Even online auction site eBay is getting in on the green trend. Its currently sponsoring a 30 Days of Green event on its website. Not only can you win some cold hard green cash, but you can also browse ideas to help you go and stay green.

To get an idea of how broad-ranging the terms "green" or "eco-friendly" can be, take a look at the eBay products to the left, compiled using such search terms. How can you be sure your coffee or T-shirt is truly good for the environment?

For starters, you might first ask if it has a "Green Seal." Not all eco-friendly products may be accredited, but every item with a "Green Seal" has been determined by an independent non-profit agency to be environmentally friendly, meeting stringent standards.

Another fairly easy way to determine the green-ness of your purchase is to confirm whether it is local. In particular, the local food movement involves items grown within 100 miles of the market. This saves a tremendous amount on fuel otherwise required to ship the goods, and as a bonus, they taste better (fresher, picked closer to ripeness, etc.)

When it comes to coffee and chocolate, you'll be looking for certification from the Fair Trade Federation. Starbucks is leading the way with its Shared Planet program. 100% of its coffee is Fair Trade certified:

The coffee giant has partnered with Conservation International (CI) for over a decade to promote farming practices that are beneficial to farmer, buyer and Mother Earth.

With a fair trade label, you know that the farmers who planted and harvested the coffee or cocoa beans have been paid fairly, and that the crops were grown in a sustainable manner.

And what about organic? Anything from shampoo to Champagne can be labeled as such, but how can you be sure? (and, is it worth the additional cost?)

In the United States, the Department of Agriculture reviews and certifies whether goods are organic. For produce, this means it was grown without the use of conventional fertilizers and is chemical-free. For products, no more than 5% inorganic material can be used. Regulations may vary in other countries, but in general, there is strict overview of organic label.

Furniture and other wood products are ideally made with sustainable materials. Check the type and source of wood to ensure that it has not come from sensitive regions like the Amazon rain forest. Bamboo is a popular eco-friendly wood-product. Everything from footstools to flooring can be created from the stalks of this woody plant.

Finally, post-consumer recycled means you are really doing your part to keep the earth green. In short, the product has been used and recycled, and now is being used again.

Think about items like playground surfaces from old tires or tennis shoes. Of course, a newspaper is the classic example that comes to mind. Entrepreneurs are getting more and more creative in coming up with ways to reduce, reuse, recycle.

You can too. For example, take bottle caps and use them as checkers or poker chips. Get lots of fun ideas for creative reuse at

Now you're armed with the various meanings of green.  Since Spring means green, its time to get out and be a smart, eco-friendly consumer!

Be a smart green consumer
Be a smart green consumer

Do you Consider How Green a Product is Before Purchasing?

See results


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • couponalbum profile image


      8 years ago from Sunnyvale, CA

      Normally the energy saving products cost a little bit high, but I still consider that all the products I buy should be energy saving. Online shopping has helped me save lots of money by using online coupons from various online electronics stores. So, for me all the days of the year are green and not only the spring.. Joined your community and would like to invite you to join mine.

    • New Day profile imageAUTHOR

      New Day 

      9 years ago from Western United States

      @succor4u, thank you! It can seem overwhelming, but there are many things we can do to go green! New Day

    • profile image


      9 years ago

      This was a great article! I can see I've got my work cut out for me. : )


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)