I have been talking a lot in previous articles about the terms eco-friendly and organic. Maybe it is about time that I define what I am talking about. Is there a difference between the two, or are they referring to the same thing?
Before I started this article, I thought I might find that the two terms are synonyms, like buffalo and bison. However, though not synonyms, without a doubt, they work in concert with one another. For example, a person who at least attempts to eat only organically grown foods may be doing it for the health aspects rather than to protect the environment. But, regardless of their reasoning, they end up being eco-friendly in the process.
There is no definition I could find listed, in the dictionary I used, for eco-friendly, so maybe I unwittingly coined a word. What it meant to me when I started using this term was that it would not in any way serve to harm the environment. One of the definitions of “ecology” is “the advocacy of protection of the air, water, and other natural resources from pollution or its effects”, and my feeling was that something eco-friendly, whether a person, product, industry, or any one of a myriad of other categories, would agree with that definition. A company steering clear of mining, chemical usage, or exploitation of the raw materials to the point that their continued existence is threatened are involved, would easily qualify as being eco-friendly, and consumers choosing to buy this type of product over the regular, possibly cheaper, products not qualifying as eco-friendly would certainly be part of a group that should be commended, considering the rather evident ramifications of wanton ecological damage over the past 3 or 4 generations.
Jim Green lives in Rockford, IL, and owns http://forestcityphotoalbums.com, which sells organic photo albums made from seeds, leaves, bamboo and flowers found growing wild 12 months of the year on the tropical Indonesian island of Bali. These eco-friendly photo albums are available in more than 80 different designs.