Our furniture consists of many different chemicals both from the plant- and mineral kingdom, such as from wood, metals, glass, fibers from plants, minerals and from the various synthetics. It is mainly them that we have to have the eyes open against. Not only can the evaporation of certain chemicals be detrimental to health, but the environmental impact can be immense. More than 100.000 chemicals are used in all kinds of production in the world today. Many have not been investigated enough before they become part of the production process. It is also valid that some chemicals which are harmless in a certain amount, or in connection with other chemicals.

If we take as an example furniture made of wood, as for example the bedroom table, then it is important from an environmental standpoint that the forrest has been cultivated in a sustainable manner. Furniture labelled with the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) label are most certainly not made from rainforest wood, but from sustainable forrests. Cork is considered one of the natural materials which are environmentally friendly, especially if it has been recycled from used cork. PVC – vinyl floor materials can however under no circumstances be considered healthy or environmentally friendly.

When buying furniture for the office it is advisable to buy durable and well-made products. As a buyer you have the right to know where the materials in the furniture come from, and how and where they were produced. Note that even the upholstery can contain toxic chemicals and that fake leather can contain PVC. It is not at all rude to ask questions while buying products. In order to change the products put on the market all consumers have to start asking questions and making demands, otherwise nothing will ever change.

Old furniture can also be useful after you no longer need it. There is therefore no reason to throw the furniture thoughtlessly away. The icelandic utility market “Góði hirðirinn” – the good shepperd gladly accepts all kinds of furniture and sells it in the shop “Góði hirðirinn” or gives the furniture away to those in need. Utility containers can be found on all Sorpa recycling stations and in the various municipalities. Sorpa accepts old mattresses with gormar (check word) in special containers but they are then disposed of in landfills because they cannot be shredded or cut down due to the fact that they destroy the machinery.  If the matresses are soft and do not contain gormar they can be put in the Red Cross containers because the Red Cross shreddes and uses the material.

It is also possible to advertise old furniture for sale, and to get some money or give it away to friends and relatives. The last option should be landfilling in any case and then only in an emergency.

June 25, 2007
Náttúran er
Náttúran er „Náttborð“, Náttúran.is: June 25, 2007 URL: http://natturan.is/d/2007/06/25/nttbor/ [Skoðað:Jan. 24, 2020]
Efni má nota eða vitna í samkvæmt almennum venjum sé heimilda getið með slóð eða fullri tilvitnun hér að ofan.
breytt: May 3, 2014