Over the past few years, there’s been a growing interest in all things eco. With the term ‘eco,’ comes a plethora of environmental catchphrases and with so many different words floating around, it can become confusing.
Environmentally Friendly (Eco-friendly)
Eco-friendly is thrown around a lot these days, but many people are unsure of what it truly means. In short, eco-friendly is a term that describes an action or an item that does not have a negative effect on the environment.
Any item or action that is considered eco-friendly should have used one of the three Rs: reduce, reuse or recycle. So, it’s important that if you are considering purchasing an item that claims to be eco-friendly, that you read the label and investigate those claims. Some products claim to be eco-friendly on the outside, but in reality it is just another marketing ploy.
Eco-conscious is a tricky word. The Merriam Webster Dictionary defines eco-conscious as “showing concern for the environment.” Well, that’s great and all but anyone can “show” concern for the environment. Unless you’re acting doing something about the environment, then being “eco-conscious” is nothing more than another show tactic.
Like with the term “eco-friendly,” people can abuse the use of “eco-conscious.” Certain people will take advantage just to see if they can turn a profit, so consumers should be wary of anything marketed as “eco-conscious.”
Organic is relatively straightforward and includes any product that is grown or made without pesticides or other unwanted chemicals. Foods and even fabrics or other products, such as packaging, can be organic if they’re made correctly.
It can be difficult to buy organic, as many companies will tote products as made from “organic cotton” or simply as being organic, but with no real proof. As a customer, follow your gut instinct. If you feel something doesn’t look quite right, it probably isn’t. Just because the manufacturer or farmer claims organic, doesn’t necessarily mean it is.
Organic is considered to be part of the green movement due to the fact that there are no chemicals being used, which in turn is kinder on the surrounding environment.
Going green or simply “green,” can have a plethora of meanings since it is generally considered to be a blanket term. Other terms that are included in the definition of green include eco-friendly, eco-conscious, eco-tourism, sustainable and organic.
Eco-travel is relatively complicated and involves being environmentally friendly while traveling. This could mean using local sources of transportation such as a bus system or eating only locally grown foods while traveling. On the other hand, it could also mean riding a bicycle to work or driving a hybrid car.