Eco-Crazed? 10 Odd Green Ideas

Strangeness abounds this holiday season. In the fields of green, ideas are sprouting up in all directions. We all want to do our part for the environment, but how far should we go? recently highlighted a Time Magazine article that compiled one of the oddest green lists I’ve ever seen.

I was ready for a good laugh, but some of these eco- ideas are so out there that it makes one wonder where all this greenness is going. Yet, others may just have staying power.

Read the ideas below. I am not going to weigh in as to what my opinion of these are, I’ll just put them out there with a summary of the idea. Then, if you would kindly comment on these two thoughts, maybe we can discuss the implications of these ideas.
1. Is the idea worth pursuing?
2. Rate the ideas on a scale from one to ten. “One,” being beyond gross or way off base, even though it might be green. “Ten,” meaning that is a totally sustainable idea.

Top Ten Odd Environmental Ideas, adapted from Time Magazine

Problem: Dance clubs are massive consumers of electrical power.
Solution: Bar Surya, an eco-nightculb in London harnesses the energy from its unique dance floor. They claim to power 60 percent of the club’s energy needs from dance power.

Toilet Wipes
Problem: We Americans like our comfy toilet paper. Very soft toilet paper is not made from a recycled substance.
Solution: Reusable toilet wipes made of cloth. Read more about Wallypop here.

Problem: Large wooden caskets and chemically embalmed bodies are not eco-friendly.
Solution: Liquefy the body by submerging it in a fluid of biological compounds. The fluid can be used as fertilizer. They claim it is energy efficient, with a small amount of carbon emissions.

Problem: Condoms are made of latex and are often produced unsustainably. Most lubricants are petroleum-based with added harmful chemicals.
Solution: Eco-condoms and a plant lubricant. The French Letter Condom Company offers latex condoms made from sustainable sources. Certified organic Yes Yes Yes lubricant is made from plants.

Problem: The spectacle of political conventions is not on par with environmental consciousness.
Solution: The hope for the 2008 Democratic convention was that it would be the “greenest convention in history.” There were encouragements of offsetting conventional travel with carbon credits, organic meals, trash recycling, and the public were asked to save water by wearing their underwear for four days. (Although the Time’s article says this, I couldn’t find anything on Google when I researched the underwear part. Anyone know about this?)

Problem: Non-sustainable fossil fuels.
Solution: A racecar that runs on tempura cooking oil. Japanese researchers say the Tempuramobile burns cleaner.

Problem: Hard to dispose of batteries contain heavy metals that leach into the soil.
Solution: Human urine is used to create a chemical reaction that powers a battery. Read more about the aptly named, Pee Battery here.

Stapleless Stapler
Problem: Staples clog landfills that pollute the soil.
Solution: The Staple-Free Stapler cuts out tiny strips of paper and uses the strips to stitch together up to five pieces of paper.

Bra Power
Problem: Untapped eco-potential.
Solution: Designers want to harness the power of the bra. Japan has produced a bra with a chopstick pocket. A San Francisco writer proposes to use the bouncing motion to power cell phones and iPods. (What?? Oh yeah, I am not commenting)

Disposable Plates
Problem: Plastic disposable plates and utensils do not decompose easily.
Solution: The Denmark company, Agroplast, produces bioplastics that are biodegradable. They are created from a pig urine compound.

Really, it took every ounce of restraint to keep my “mouse” shut on some of these. Read the full article here to find out more. Please comment below on these sustainable living ideas.

Ronnie Citron-Fink lives in New York with her husband, two children (when they come home to the nest), two dogs and a cat. Ronnie is a teacher and a writer. She has been a contributing writer for Family Fun magazine. She currently writes articles about education and home design. Her writings are in four books including Family Fun Home and Some Delights of the Hudson Valley.


Nicole C.
Past Member 6 years ago

The death one is great! We're going to run out of room to bury bodies eventually. My entire family refuses to be buried and was planning on being cremated but this is a much better idea!

Eric B.
Eric B.6 years ago

I laugh that we think the toilet wipe is too much.

Is it because you have to see your feces? What do you think comes out of there? Roses?

We wipe our babies with baby wipes, we see their feces every time we change a dirty diaper.

A reusable wipe, or a biodegradable bamboo wipe. I would use them, without a problem. Give me something like a diaper genie for the reusables and I'll be fine with cleaning them.

Erin R.
Erin R.6 years ago

Toilet Wipes - no thanks :-)

Stapleless Stapler - nice idea

Death - too disgusting

Jane L.6 years ago


Linda M.
Linda M.6 years ago

reusable toilet wipes? i'm more eco than anyone i've ever met but even i won't go there

Nansee C.
Nansee C.6 years ago

all of these ideas are pretty doable. the only one that's a bit .. difficult for me to adapt to is the cloth toilet wipes.

Claudia L.
Claudia L.6 years ago

stapler would be great as it can be hard to remember yto get all of them from paper before recycling

Chandra Timm
Chandra Timm6 years ago

Whoa!! Being a bit of an extremist, I thought these were all creative, amazing ideas. It didn't even click in my head the connection of condoms and petroleum...! I would have never thought..

Maria H.
Past Member 6 years ago

Some cities make sidewalks out of the floor that generates power- really great idea!

Linda M.
Linda M.6 years ago