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Green Terms

Know your Green Terms -


A term merging the concepts of “green” (environmentally sound) and “whitewashing” (to conceal or gloss over wrongdoing). Greenwashing is any form of marketing or public relations that links a corporate, political, religious or nonprofit organization to a positive association with environmental issues for an un-sustainable product, service, or practice. Sustainability Meeting the needs of the present without depleting resources or harming natural cycles for future generations.

Gray Water

Wastewater generated from domestic practices such as dish washing, laundry and bathing. Grey water comprises 50-80% of residential wastewater!

Pre-Consumer Waste

Reclaimed waste materials that never reach the consumer like, trimmings from wood, paper or plastics industries.

Post-Consumer Waste

Reclaimed waste material from a product’s original purpose, including recycled paper (made into toilet paper) or plastic soda bottles (made into ‘fleece’ clothing).


Material that can break down biologically if there is enough light, heat or water to support the process. *Just because an item is bio-degradable doesn’t mean it should be thrown into the garbage, where it’ll head straight for the landfill!

Renewable Energy

Energy produced by harnessing natural resources like sunlight, wind, rain, tides and geothermal heat, that are naturally replenished.


The release of gas into the air from products treated with chemicals during their manufacture.


Volitile Organic Compounds come from things like paints, pharmaceuticals, and refrigerants. VOCs are usually industrial solvents, or by-products produced by chlorination in water treatment. VOCs are often components of petroleum fuels, paint thinners, and dry cleaning agents. VOCs are common ground-water contaminants.