While there’'s nothing quite like the woodsy smell of a freshly sharpened #2 pencil or a new notebook to motivate my thirst for knowledge, school supplies take quite a toll, both on the environment and on your pocketbook. For a head start on an environmentally responsible semester, I'’ve compiled a shopping list of eco-friendly school supplies.
1. Step into the new school year with Simple Shoes' women's Satire
ecoSNEAKS (pictured above), perfect for tearing up the school yard or making a dash to your next class.
2. Most sustainable backpacks are clunky and unattractive, but the Lands’ End Eco-friendly Backpack, made from recycled plastic bottles, zips everything into two easy-to-organize compartments for a sleek look.
3. Before buying new pencils, raid the junk drawers in your house and gather up the ones you already own, waiting to be sharpened. If you still come up short, Greenciles are produced using fewer trees than regular wood pencils.
4. Printer out of ink? Remanufactured cartridges are recycled, refurbished, and refilled to fit with virtually any model of printer. Plus, they’re half the price of name brand ink cartridges.
5. Going away for school? Habitat for Humanity’s ReStore carries secondhand home goods——including furniture, dish sets, and refrigerators——perfect for a first apartment or a college dorm room. Buying from the ReStore keeps reusable materials out of landfills while supporting Habitat for Humanity’'s mission to build affordable housing for those in need.
—Sarah J. Montoro, Editorial Intern