Looking for the scoop on green cleaning your laundry? It is estimated that Americans wash about 35 billion loads of laundry each year. To accomplish this routine task, Americans use about 8.3 billion pounds of dry detergent and a billion gallons of liquid detergent annually.
Phosphates are a common ingredient often found in laundry detergent to improve overall washing performance; they are particularly necessary in hard water. Without using phosphates, manufacturers have to add more surfactants, which are expensive. The drawback to using phosphates is that secondary wastewater treatment removes only a small percentage of phosphorus from the influent. As a result, a considerable amount of phosphorus is released into streams, rivers, lakes, and estuaries through wastewater effluent. This is a major environmental issue because the high phosphate levels cause algae blooms that become dense enough to suffocate marine life.
In 1959, essentially all laundry detergents in the US contained between 30% and 50% phosphate builders. Since one pound of phosphorus can grow 700 pounds of algae, the damage caused to aquatic life was tremendous. Through extensive legislation and reformulation in the 1960s and 1970s, the three major detergent companies limited their phosphorous levels to the current level of 8.7%.
Alternatively, the use of enzymes in eco-friendly detergents reduces the need for chemical based detergents. Additionally, enzymes allow washing at lower water temperatures, thus reducing the energy needed to heat the water when compared to non-biological detergents. This fact alone can save an average of $40 per year. Furthermore, the enzymes pose no harm to the environment as they are broken down into harmless biomass, either as part of the wash itself or at the sewage treatment plant.
Since the average consumer uses about 30 pounds of laundry detergent per year, why not use an eco-friendly product?
Green Cleaning Products LLC is now offering an all enzyme laundry detergent that has been certified by EPA under the DfE Design for the Environment Program, as well as enzyme based fabric prewash and stain pen. These non-toxic cleaners are safe for you, your family, and your pets and are available for your home and business online at Green Cleaning Products.