ICU Eco-Friendly Glasses
Certain eco-friendly practices have become extremely easy to embrace. Recycling, for example, is now required in many states, and you are provided with a bin specifically for that purpose, so that treks to the recycling center on the weekend are no longer a requirement for the responsible disposal of cans and bottles. Then there is the organic diet. With the demand on the rise for consumables that don’t contain harmful pesticides, herbicides, insecticides, hormones, or antibiotics, you can now find many organic products in your local grocery store at comparable prices to your regular fare. Even organic clothing and house-wares have come into vogue to such a degree that they are not only easy to locate, but are also fashionable, wearable, and affordable. However, there are a vast number of consumer items that you probably never imagined could be green, and eye-glasses are certainly on that list for most people.
So how can your eyewear reduce your carbon footprint? There are a couple of different ways, but probably the best (and greenest) solution is recycled and refurbished glasses. Some companies, like Blue Planet Eyewear, offer an assortment of recycled frames in modern styles (in both sunglasses and readers), while others, like Allyn Scura provide a wide variety of authentic vintage styles for those who want more of a retro feel. Of course, if you’re going to take a trip down memory lane with your eyewear, you don’t have to pay the same price as high fashion. Check out local thrift stores or antique malls to nab the era-appropriate frames of your choice at a lower cost. The only caveat: true antiques have a good chance of being damaged, so going through a retailer that specializes in reclamation and restoration is the best way to ensure that your frames are functional as well as fabulous.
Believe it or not, you can also go green with your lenses. Teklite lenses (available at Frames Direct) use basically the same process as other lens-crafters, but instead of throwing away leftover materials from plastic injection molding, they are able to reclaim up to 90% of that waste and send it off to be used for other products like toys and automobile parts. In addition, they package all of their products in 100% recycled boxes padded with PCW paper and biodegradable tissue. And if you didn’t think they were serious about their eco-friendly stance, they also use a process that consumes 50% less water (by recycling it) during stages of production that require water cooling. Even Frames Direct has gotten aboard the eco-conscious bandwagon by implementing a plant-a-tree program that sponsors one tree to be planted for ever pair of Teklite lenses sold through their site. Now that’s some green eyewear!
So you see, if you look hard enough, you can find all kinds of eco-friendly options that you never even thought possible. And when it comes to your eyewear, you’ll be seeing things a lot more clearly if your glasses aren’t contributing to air-clogging or Earth-cluttering pollution (whether through processing or from dumping in landfills). So make sure to buy recycled, reclaimed, or eco-conscious eyewear and when you’re ready for something new, recycle your old ones in turn.