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March, 2010

From space-saving designs to the latest in sophisticated style, our design tips are made with you and your dream bathroom in mind.

Stamps of Sustainability

Stamps of Sustainability

From plumbing to produce, companies are doing all they can today to make their products greener. If you're new to the green scene, how can you distinguish these products? By studying up on some independent certifications, you can make more educated decisions when it comes to your green product purchases.

WaterSense

Symbolized by the words "EPA WaterSense," accompanied by a blue and green water drop, WaterSense® is the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) program to help consumers save water for future generations and reduce costs on their utility bills. WaterSense aims to decrease indoor and outdoor water use through water-efficient products and simple, water-saving practices. The program encourages customers to look for WaterSense-labeled products, which have been independently certified for efficiency and performance, and promotes water-saving techniques that reduce stress on water systems and the environment.

Moen offers a number of WaterSense-labeled lavatory faucets in both showrooms and home improvement centers. Among the industry's first faucets to earn the WaterSense label are Moen's Muirfield™ bathroom faucets. Available at Lowe's, this bath suite offers single- and two-handle centerset faucets in a traditional style that feature mid- or high-arc spouts. Most importantly, Muirfield bath faucets offer a flow-optimized aerator, which uses up to 32 percent less water without sacrificing great performance.

ENERGY STAR

ENERGY STAR is a joint program of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Department of Energy helping us all save money and protect the environment through energy-efficient products and practices. The ENERGY STAR symbol, a cursive "energy" overlapping a star, enclosed by a top arch, signifies that a product or a home is energy efficient, meaning it meets strict energy efficiency guidelines set by the EPA and U.S. Department of Energy. ENERGY STAR products include appliances, home electronics, heating and cooling systems, windows and lighting. To find comprehensive categorical listings of ENERGY STAR PRODUCTS, visit www.energystar.gov and click on "products."

National Organic Program

The U.S. Department of Agriculture's National Organic Program (NOP) develops, implements, and administers national production, handling and labeling standards for organic agricultural products.

The USDA Organic Label, a brown circle outline with "USDA organic" printed inside in green and white, can be found on everything from food to household cleaning supplies and personal care items. This symbol means that ingredients were produced without growth hormones, antibiotics, bioengineering, most conventional pesticides or synthetic fertilizers that have the ability to harm the environment and your family.

Recyclable Product

The universal recyclable product symbol is comprised of three chasing arrows in a triangular loop. This symbol is often found with a black outline and green fill or in solid black or green. On plastic bottles and containers, this symbol is typically accompanied by a number from one to seven.

When you're ready to discard a product, check for the recyclable product symbol. Many communities now recycle newspaper, magazines, corrugated cardboard, aluminum and tin cans, glass and plastics with numbers one or two; some will also recycle plastics numbered three through six. Some areas will not accept plastics with a number seven, as these materials have been made from blended plastics and are often difficult to recycle. For more information on recycling resources within your community, visit the local resources section of the National Recycling Coalition's Web site at www.nrc-recycle.org/localresources.aspx.

So, next time you're looking for green products, look for the above labels as a no-fail guide to making an informed green purchase.

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