Today, candle consumers are more conscious of their candle's environmental impact. While a great mentality and positive trend, sometimes, using 'green' ingredients and natural sources doesn't necessarily mean that one candle is substantially better than the other.
For years, the candle community believed that most types of soy wax candles were healthier, burned cleaner, and creating them was better for the environment when compared to traditional paraffin wax candles. However, we can show you how misconceptions foster soy wax candle hype, and that paraffin and soy wax (especially soy blend scented candles) aren't necessarily better than each other.
The soy market is not as eco-friendly as some say "Is soy wax organic? Is soy wax biodegradable?" With the combined area of France, Germany, Belgium, and the Netherlands, soy farms are no small operation. The World Wildlife Fund helps publish many scholarly articles that detail the harmful ecological effects of biodegradable substances like soybeans and soybean farms.
Many of our most ecologically diverse environments are also home to some of the most devastating soybean farms. In South America, we've demolished portions of the Amazon and Cerrado to make room for larger farms. As a result of deforestation, the carbon sequestration rate increases; carbon sequestration is how foliage and trees remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. Soybean crops cannot absorb enough carbon dioxide to justify their expansive territories.
We've heard these cautionary facts before. Global warming and severe climate change could be on the horizon if soybean producers don't manage supply and demand efficiently. Soil erosion, decreased water availability, contemporary farming chemicals, monocultural farming, and even human displacement are adverse effects that we experience as direct results of over farming. That's not to say that these environmental detriments are exclusive to soybean farms. To make paraffin wax, farmers extract petroleum and dewax light-lubricated oil stocks.
Burning oil, primarily petroleum products, isn't healthy for our green planet. Petroleum is mainly a mixture of various hydrocarbons, damaging our atmosphere and ozone. One advantage of biodegradable substances in the environment is that production techniques burn fewer fossil fuels.
It is up to your candle maker to ensure that their providers, resources, and production methods are as sustainable as possible, rather than what wax they choose to sell. Distinguishing between biodegradable and nonbiodegradable pollutants is critical in maintaining as minimal environmental impact as possible. While there is no concrete answer for "is paraffin wax eco friendly?" We recommend finding local candle makers that communicate their sourcing and production techniques.