By John DeFore
Green Right Now
As September and the back-to-school season creep into view, environmentally conscious students (and retailers who recognize the increased selling power of Earth-friendly claims) may be surprised at the variety of book bags, backpacks, and the like being made these days with an eye toward sustainability. From humble to elaborate, practically every sort of bag seems to be available in a green option.
The Voltaic bag, a high-tech affair covered with solar cells, has been getting attention for a couple of years now. Its photovoltaic array can power the arsenal of gizmos a student carries, and the latest versions of the bag even claim to be capable of capturing enough juice to run a laptop, provided you leave it in the sun all day. (“Sorry, prof, I didn’t want to skip class and spend the day in the park, but I had to power my computer if I want to file my research paper…”).