Coming Clean: The Facts on PVA Laundry Sheets
In an era where eco-friendly products are not just preferred but necessary, we are often asked why we don't offer laundry detergent sheets. The answer is rooted in our commitment to sustainability and informed by extensive research on the materials used in these products, particularly polyvinyl alcohol (PVA).
Understanding PVA's Environmental Footprint
PVA is found in many household cleaning items, including laundry pods and sheets that dissolve in your washer. However, the fact that PVA dissolves does not mean it vanishes without a trace. Investigations into PVA have shown that the substance's dissolvability does not equate to true biodegradability. The reality is starker: a substantial amount of PVA doesn't undergo adequate treatment, leading to environmental deposition that's equivalent to a staggering volume of plastic waste each year.
The Challenge with Biodegradability
The prevailing discourse around PVA highlights a critical point of contention - its biodegradability. Scientific scrutiny reveals that a large fraction of PVA from detergent pods remains untreated, breaking down into microplastics rather than benign byproducts. These microplastics are particularly troublesome as they can escape water treatment processes and accumulate in natural habitats, with the potential to enter the food chain and as increasingly shown, our bodies.
Our Choice for Liquids
Given the existing data on PVA's environmental repercussions, Common Good has chosen to avoid incorporating this material into our product lineup. We believe that using plastic sparingly and responsibly is better than letting them slip into our rivers and oceans unchecked. It's all about being responsible with every choice we make.
Our products will stay PVA-free until we're absolutely sure it's safe for the environment.
Want to learn more? Check out these sources:
For the nitty-gritty on PVA's environmental impact, dive into the Plastic Pollution Coalition's article.
Get the lowdown on PVA in our waters from Plastic Oceans.
For the hard science on what happens to PVA in wastewater treatment plants, check out this in-depth study.