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1) Avoid TRICLOSAN. It's toxic to nearly everything in our waterways. It must be listed among the active ingredients if it is present in a soap or cleanser. Often it is found in antibacterial soaps.
2) Only buy green cleaning products. Here's a resource.
3) Make your own cleaning products out of vinegar, lemon, etc. Here's their recipe. Ingredients: ¼ cup white vinegar, 2 tsp. baking soda, 3 ½ cups hot water, 20 drops of essential oil (eucalyptus, lemon, or peppermint work great), ¼ cup liquid castile soap.
Mix ingredients in a 32 oz. spray bottle, add castile soap last. More recipes here.

SOURCE
http://www.oeconline.org/our-work/rivers/love-your-river/love-your-river-challenge-green-cleaning

Comments

( 4 comments — Leave a comment )
ford_prefect42
Mar. 14th, 2012 06:50 pm (UTC)
Pretty much all municipal sewer systems have treatment plants that effectively remove all these sorts of substances. Sewer treatment plant effluent is potable.
liveonearth
Mar. 14th, 2012 07:06 pm (UTC)
How effectively? How potable?? Potable enough for you? What do you know about wastewater treatment?

Wiki: During wastewater treatment, a portion of triclosan is degraded, while the remaining adsorbs to sewage sludge or exits the plant in wastewater effluent.

What portion?

(As usual I have more questions than answers. I have been avoiding triclosan for a while now, it's not so hard just to not buy it.)
ford_prefect42
Mar. 14th, 2012 09:11 pm (UTC)
I'm a civil engineer. I have been involved in wastewater treatment plant design. I can't speak to the specific removal rate of triclosan, because it does depend on the.specific technologies employed, but you're looking at 90% femoval rates at a minimum.

I would personaly hesitate to drink effluent, but the plant workers routinely do so for demonstrations.
ford_prefect42
Mar. 15th, 2012 02:01 pm (UTC)
I looked a little deeper.


triclosan is detected at some level in the effluent of 17% of sewage treatment plant effluent.

The most efficient means of degrading it is aerobic digestion. Which is a process that takes place in spades in any naturally occurring surface water.

I would be more concerned about the use of it in pesticides and other applications where it is applied directly to the surface, and subject to runoff than about its household use where it is heavily treated prior to release.



http://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=wastewater%20discharge%20standards%20trichlosan&source=web&cd=1&ved=0CCMQFjAA&url=http%3A%2F%2Fciteseerx.ist.psu.edu%2Fviewdoc%2Fdownload%3Fdoi%3D10.1.1.199.3328%26rep%3Drep1%26type%3Dpdf&ei=CvVhT4iKKubt0gGH9cC7CA&usg=AFQjCNHFjEsDv-CK3dODBFPVkv8hgB4kfg

http://www.epa.gov/oppsrrd1/REDs/factsheets/triclosan_fs.htm

While I don't trust the EPA, I *do* trust the EPA not to *understate* a hazard.
( 4 comments — Leave a comment )

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