Want to keep the planet and your portfolio green? The Fool shows you how in our special series on Earth-friendly investing.
It's not easy being green, but there are still plenty of companies hoping to cash in on consumers' growing interest in environmentally responsible lifestyles.
This can definitely be a good thing. Toyota
But there's a flip side to all of this. As green living gains momentum, more companies are seeing dollar signs, and more green products are coming to the market. I wouldn't be surprised if another year or two finds us overwhelmed with marketers pushing green products on consumers from every direction, guilting us into spending more to save Mother Earth. We may risk ending up with mass "green fatigue," never wanting to hear the word "green" again.
Shoppers are already growing skeptical. An article in the Las Vegas Review Journal noted that while more people are concerned about the environment, consumers are increasingly dubious about many products' eco-friendly claims. The article specifically mentioned very mixed reactions to the new green line from Clorox
Fortunately, there are very simple ways for consumers to stay green without having to pony up for special green products. Good ol' vinegar can be used as an all-purpose cleaning agent, and if you want to get a fresh scent going, a lemon can do the trick. Buying the fluorescent light bulbs that GE
That may all seem more than just a bit boring. But just like in investing, doing the little things right over and over again, rather than jumping at every passing trend, tends to produce some pretty remarkable results.
Fool contributor Matt Koppenheffer does not own shares of any of the companies mentioned. The Fool's disclosure policy, having misunderstood the true meaning of "green," needs some tips on how to get the lime-green dye out of its hair.