Environmentally friendly spring cleaning with the Blue Angel

Every year, about 550,000 tonnes of chemicals are released into the environment through cleaning in private households alone. Of course, this doesn’t mean that spring cleaning is cancelled this year. But consumers should focus on essential products, says Marcus Gast of the Federal Environment Agency. These are, for example...

Marcus Gast: A bathroom cleaner for the bathroom that removes limescale. Then an all-purpose cleaner and a scouring agent for the kitchen, and washing-up liquid for cleaning the windows. If possible, you should avoid aggressive cleaning agents with hydrochloric acid or strong alkalis that are labelled as corrosive, and especially disinfectant cleaners. Those should only be used if recommended by a doctor. And even during Covid times, precautionary disinfection is not necessary in private households.

When it comes to choosing the most environmentally friendly cleaning products, consumers are helped, for example, by government environmental labels.

Marcus Gast: These are the Blue Angel or the EU Ecolabel. There is independent control and awarding. There are also certain organic labels: However, it is not always clear how environmentally friendly these products are. It’s important that eco-labels like the Blue Angel also exist for all-purpose cleaners, bathroom cleaners, glass cleaners, washing-up liquids and all the other essential products. This means that the quality of the products is guaranteed: They must clean just as well as a conventional product.

But even with eco-labelled cleaning agents, it depends on the quantity that is used: Using too much is bad for the environment.