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Don't Forget About Easy 'Green' Alternatives

May 12, 2000

The Los Angeles County Department of Public Works appreciates Susan Carpenter's efforts to educate readers about "green" cleaning products in "Green Cleaning: It's Not That Easy" (April 21). However, the article does not give a fair shake to many green cleaning alternatives that are simple, safe, cheap, effective--and require nothing more than looking in the kitchen cupboard for the ingredients.

The county's Household Hazardous Waste Public Education Program has tested a plethora of green cleaning recipes on KTLA-TV. The results of the alternative recipes on live TV are impressive and have prompted an overwhelming response from viewers wanting to learn more about simple, safe and inexpensive green cleaning techniques . . . consumers have to do nothing more than reach for the baking soda, vinegar and lemon juice to effectively and efficiently clean house. In March alone, nearly 2,000 people requested or downloaded the nontoxic recipes on the county's Web site ( or on its hotline ([888] CLEAN-LA).

The county encourages residents to incorporate nontoxic alternatives into cleaning routines whenever possible, but also recognizes that cheap and effective green alternatives may not always be available. If it is necessary to use household hazardous-waste products, residents must remember to use, store and dispose of these products properly to protect the health and safety of themselves, their families and the environment.


Program director

Environmental programs division

Los Angeles County Department

of Public Works

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