Mardi Gras the green way: Think recycle

When buying up those Mardi Gras beads and trinkets to feel festive with the best of them, look for beads that have been recycled. Every year beads by the bushels (lots and lots and lots of beads) are tossed into the crowd who watch the parade. These cheap plastic baubles from China (see post about bead safety) may be great around a person’s neck but not in a landfill.

The Sierra Club and Arc of Greater New Orleans have a joint effort going to get people to buy recycled beads from them. Not only are you helping the environment, but you’re helping these two organizations that are working towards rebuilding New Orleans. The thing is, the beads are sold in 30 pound bags. That’s a lot of beads. They also have other recycled Mardi Gras goods.

To find out how to get these recycle beads and other Mardi Gras trinkets, head to the Sierra Club Delta Chapter Web site. The phone number and email are listed there. While you’re at the site, check out the other efforts being made to help New Orleans ecologically rebuild. The Greater Arc of New Orleans is located at 925 S. Labarre Road. This is an organization that serves adults with developmental disabilities. You can also turn in beads for recycling here. There are two other locations. Call 504/837-5105 for information.

To buy artsy and interesting products made from recycled beads, check out Unique Products. There is a wide selection of night lights like the one pictured. The money from these purchases also goes to aid New Orleans. You can buy on-line.