Costume: Lululemon (made in China, shipped to North America or the UK)
Shipping products across oceans make up 3% of global carbon emissions. The ships endanger marine wildlife and pollute our oceans. Non-organic cotton uses 10% of the world's pesticides and 25% of it's insecticides (Ecoholic 2006) and whole crap load of water (256 cubic gigameters a year). That stretchy yoga feel? Yep, plenty of petroleum (ahem oil), water, water and more carbon.
The Gear: PVC Yoga Mat with a fancy synthetic bag.
PVC is what Greenpeace calls one of the most harmful plastics on the planet. The water, energy and carbon emissions required to create this polyvinyl chloride beauty is ridiculous all on it's own. Did you check to see where it was made? Shipping is a b*tch. Slap that plastic polluted mat into a fancy shiny nylon (aka petroleum based) mat bag and we're good to go.
The Ride: "Um, my car?"
Driving= carbon emissions. "Nuff said.
The studio/class: Heated yoga (yep I'm including Moksha here, despite offsets)
The energy required to heat a room to 95-102 degrees F all day long is ridiculous. That "cleansing" sweat yogis rave about sure isn't cleansing our planet. Generating that much heat means a huge amount of carbon emissions are being spewed out into our atmosphere. You're skin may feel "cleansed" but your lungs, health and planet sure don't.
The Perks: Foam yoga blocks, packaged yoga mat cleaners, accessories and cute trendy clothing, bottled water for purchase.
Eco-reality: Foam blocks may be cushy, but they're made from synthetic petroleum based products, require more water and energy and spew out climate changing carbon. Ick. We also really don't need to be spraying our mats with chemical enhanced yoga mat cleaners when water and vinegar will do just fine. Water is a fundamental human right and shouldn't be bought or sold. A water cooler should do just fine (especially if you reuse the jug and refill it from your filtered tap at home).
Most of us are a bit beyond the "Planet can suck it" phase when it comes to yoga, but sometimes we can convince ourselves that our little ole yoga practice can't be *that* harmful... can it?
article copyright of EcoYogini at ecoyogini.blogspot.com