Design Roundup: Lawsuit Targets Dial Soap Claims, GE to Sell Greener Fridges

Design Roundup: Lawsuit Targets Dial Soap Claims, GE to Sell Greener Fridges

Soapy hands - CC license by Flickr user Arlington County

 A class-action lawsuit is targeting Dial Corp.'s claims related to an antibacterial ingredient found in its Dial Complete Foaming Antibacterial Hand Wash. The product contains triclosan, a chemical that has been linked to hormone regulation changes in lab animals. The lawsuit wants Dial to stop using advertising claims such as saying the soap "kills 99.9% of germs," is the "#1 Doctor Recommended" brand of antibacterial soap" and "kills more germs than any other liquid hand soap." According to the U.S. Food & Drug Administration, antibacterial soap containing triclosan is no more effective than washing with regular soap and water.

The Cradle to Cradle Products Innovation Institute (formerly known as the Green Products Innovation Institute) has committed to training at least 100 assessors that would be able to evaluate and advise companies as they work on products seeking Cradle to Cradle (C2C) certification. The institute also aims to certify 1,000 products to the C2C guidelines by 2015. The institute is developing metrics and standards for various products, based on the C2C certification protocol. The nonprofit institute announced its goal at the Clinton Global Initiative annual meeting last week.

Green Mountain Coffee Roasters launched their first product in paper-based K-Cups, packs that provide enough tea or coffee for one cup. Green Mountain will package and distribute Celestial Seasonings' Honey Lemon Ginger Green Tea in the paper K-Cups, which are not recyclable due to a plastic liner inside of them. Up until the creation of a paper K-Cup, though, all K-Cups were entirely made of plastic. Green Mountain says that paper-based K-Cups can't protect coffee well enough from light, air and moisture. 

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has passed a proposed rule that would allow companies to use isobutane as a refrigerant in household refrigerators. General Electric plans to release its new Monogram refrigerator early next year, using isobutane in place of HFCs (hydrofluorocarbons) and HCFCs (hydrochlorofluorocarbons). Those chemicals were introduced to replace refrigerants that damage the ozone layer, but HFCs and HCFCs are more potent than carbon dioxide when it comes to global warming. GE petitioned the EPA in 2008 to allow it to use isobutane, which is widely used in fridges in Europe and Asia. Pepsi and Ben & Jerry's have each tested coolers that use isobutane, propane and other hydrocarbons.

Soapy hands - CC license by Flickr user Arlington County