Going Green

Staff Writer
Columbus Monthly

1. Right about now, those first compact fluorescent light bulbs you installed might be burning out. You did well to switch to these energy-savers, but the materials in CFL bulbs should not be sent to landfills. And unfortunately, they can't (yet) go in the recyclable bin. But you can take them to any Home Depot store, where they will be disposed of properly. For the location nearest you, go to and click on Store Finder.

2. It's the rare child who finishes all of her chicken fingers at a restaurant, but Styrofoam take-home containers are not the most eco-friendly way to transport leftovers. How about taking a stainless-steel tiffin set when you eat out? Tiffin sets, available at earth-friendly retail stores like Dublin's Generation Green (, are stackable carriers that originated in colonial India. (They even include little tins for salad dressing!)

3. Recycle and support education at the same time. The Waste Not Center in Columbus accepts donations of items like pens, pencils, fabric, glue, books, videos and containers, and then supplies them to teachers, artists and nonprofit organizations who pay a small annual membership fee. Call the center at 614-278-9445 for information, or visit them online at

4. You are what you wear. Down the Garden Path in Upper Arlington has a great array of environmentally friendly clothing made from organic and pesticide-free materials like bamboo, soy fiber and hemp. Visit their web site,, for descriptions on why these materials matter, and then visit the shop to see how stylish eco-friendly can be.

5. Buy locally grown food. The Columbus Dispatch features an interactive map each growing season with the locations and business hours for farmers' markets and U-pick farms. It's available at beginning in May. You'll be supporting local farmers while helping your kids make a tangible connection between the food they eat and where it comes from.