Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Day 351 of our Green Year: No Highlighters

Well, only two weeks left to go! It is crazy to think we have done 351 blogs throughout this year, but now that we are close to finishing Our Green Year, we realize what a monumental effort this has been at times. Given all of that, we would do it all over again if we had to because it was simply great.

Now, getting to our post for today. In our work as professional writers, we have found that on occasion we need highlighters, especially when we are doing research for a book for a client. However, recently when I went to look at buying more highlighters I began to think about the effect these have on the environment. First of all, you have to look at their manufacturing where several chemicals are used to create the color that we see on the paper. While most highlighters these days are water-based and alcohol-based, they still contain some chemicals and those chemicals leach into the landfills when they are thrown away. Some contain xylene and volatile organic compounds that leach their way into our environment. As well, there is the plastic housing of the highlighters to consider.
Of course all this amounts to only a little bit in each highlighter, but multiply it by millions of highlighters each year and that is a big problem.

So, from now on Layla and I will be 'highlighting' by underlining things in the paper using our biodegradable pens.