Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Just when you thought bamboo was a keeper...

According to the Nov. 5 Salon (WSJ--B5), bamboo may or may not be such a good thing for the environment. Yes, you've probably heard about how fast it grows or how little energy it uses, BUT there is always a caveat...or two, or three. Their bullet points:

* Manufacturers often use sodium hydroxide, a contributor to pollution, when making bamboo textiles.

* Bamboo growers sometimes apply pesticides to boost yields.

* The expanding market for bamboo could prompt developing-world growers to clear native forests, disrupting fragile ecosystems.

Oh well. I guess I'll have to have my furniture be not bamboo, but instead "of clay and wattles made," as Yeats did in "The Lake Isle of Innisfree."

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