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Clotheslines focus of environmental debate

UPI News Service, 10/28/2007 

A number of Colorado residents who prefer to dry their clothes on clotheslines are at the forefront of a growing environmental debate on the age-old practice.

While hundreds of thousands of U.S. homeowner associations have opposed the traditional household chore, Colorado residents like Amy Nuernberg have suggested the traditional drying method is environmentally friendly, The Denver Post reported Saturday.

"I recycle. I take my own bags to the grocery. I refuse to buy my veggies in plastic containers. We are building an energy-efficient house. And a few weeks ago, I thought, 'Why on earth am I putting my clothes in a dryer?'" Nuernberg said.

Statistics from Project Laundry List appear to back up Nuernberg's decision as the more than 88 million clothes dryers used in the United States make up 6 percent of all U.S. households' electricity usage.

The technological marvels may make clothes drying easier and in some case more efficient, but they also come with a cost to users and to the environment.

The Post said statistics showed that overall, U.S. dryers create an estimated 2,224 pounds of carbon dioxide annually.

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Copyright 2007 by United Press International

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