Green Terminology

BAGASEE:
the biomass remaining after sugarcane stalks are crushed and the juice extracted which is then ground up and made into paper pulp for dinnerware and various containers.

BIODEGRADABLE:
(of a substance or object) Capable of being decomposed by bacteria or other living organisms.

CARBON FOOTPRINT:
the amount of carbon dioxide and other carbon compounds emitted due to the consumption of fossil fuels by a particular person, group, etc.

CARBON-NEUTRAL:
a term used to describe the action of organizations, businesses and individuals taking action to remove as much carbon dioxide from the atmosphere as each put in to it. The overall goal of carbon neutrality is to achieve a zero carbon footprint.

COMPOSTABLE:
any product that is capable of decaying over time through the action of living organisms and a combination of heat and humidity. Ideal composting conditions are 150⁰F and 90% humidity.

ECO-FRIENDLY:
not harmful to the environment.

ECOLOGO:
North America’s most widely recognized and respected certification of environmental leadership. By setting standards and certifying products in more than 120 categories, EcoLogo helps you identify, trust, buy, and sell environmentally preferable (“green”) goods and services.

ENVIRONMENTALLY PREFERRED PRODUCTS (EPP):
products and services that reduce the impact on human health and the environment.

GREEN CLEANING:
cleaning to protect and safeguard the health of humans while at the same time minimizing the impact to the environment. The use of environmentally friendly cleaning products and equipment is required to achieve this.

GREEN ENERGY:
energy that can be produced in a way that protects the natural environment, for example by using wind, water, or the sun.

LEADERSHIP IN ENERGY AND ENVIRONMENTAL DESIGN (LEED):
a rating system developed by the USGBC which promotes certification of high performance and sustainable buildings nationwide. Certifications include:

  • LEED EB – existing buildings
  • LEED NC – new construction
  • LEED CI – commercial & interior

POLYLACTIC ACID (PLA):
a thermoplastic aliphatic polyester derived from renewable resources such as corn starch, tapioca roots, chips or starch, or sugar cane.

POST CONSUMER FIBER:
a fiber that has served its intended use, having completed its life as a consumer item, and has been recovered from the solid waste stream.

PRE CONSUMER FIBER:
a mill/manufacturing scrap or printing waste that has been captured during the production process.

RECYCABLE:
any product capable of being used again after being treated or processed to make it suitable for reuse.

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RENEWABLE:
relating to a natural resource, such as solar energy, water, or wood, that is never used up or that can be replaced by new growth.

RENEWABLE RESOURCE:
any natural resource that can be replenished naturally with the passage of time. In other words, we use less then what grows or occurs naturally. (Example: Sugarcane takes one year to maturity versus a tree which takes thirty years!)

SOLAR ENERGY:
the conversion of the sun’s rays into useful forms of energy, such as electricity or heat. The amount of solar radiation a location receives depends on a variety of factors including geographic location, time of day, season, local landscape, and local weather.

SOURCE REDUCTION:
reducing the volume or toxicity of waste generated in the design, manufacturing, purchasing, delivering, or usage of a product.

SUGARCANE:
a perennial tropical grass with tall stout jointed stems from which sugar is extracted. The fibrous residue can be used as fuel, in fiberboard, and for a number of other purposes.

SUSTAINABLE:
capable of being maintained at a steady level without exhausting natural resources or causing severe ecological damage.

U.S. ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY (EPA):
a government agency that provides funding, research, education, and assessment efforts in support of environmental science while developing and enforcing environmental regulations in an effort to protect human health and the environment by writing and enforcing regulations based on laws passed by Congress.

U.S. GREEN BUILDING COUNCIL (USGBC): a third party organization that promotes sustainability in how buildings are designed, built, and operated. Its mission is to accelerate the development and implementation of green building practices and promote environmentally responsible buildings as well as healthy workplaces.

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