Green Laundry

As it is for most people, Saturday is my laundry day.

In my building, we pay twice: for the water and electricity used in the laundry room, as well as 1.75 for each run in the washer and each run in the dryer. The coin mechanisms are broken into a lot, so this does not include quarters sacrificed to figure out whether or not a machine works. Yikes. Quarters don’t grow on trees, son.

You can only re-wear work shirts and pajamas so much before yes, you too start to smell like Pigpen from Peanuts – you know, with the stink lines following you in the air and stuff. A load a week might be unavoidable.

I do not relish the 3 hours I spent every week washing my clothes by hand in Morocco, so I am going to try to make my washing efficient AND sustainable this week. Oh, compromises.

Help with green laundry detergents from Co-Op America and Science Base (two very different viewpoints).

Since dryers use most of the energy bemoaned in laundering, many eco-launderers recommend line drying, especially on April 19 – National Hanging Out Day. However, many apartment dwellers including myself do not have the Right to Dry.

Exciting facts about line drying: using a clothesline once a week will reduce your carbon-based emissions 50 lbs. per year, and will save you $100 to $300 every year on household energy costs!

Here are some other tips for greening your laundry habits. Check out Sebastopol-based LineDry, an artistic statement about the beauty of line drying.

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