An eco-friendly or environmentally responsible house is an imperative thing in order to facilitate an environmental friendly habitat. The house is one of the biggest contributors to an individual’s global carbon footprint.
The home contains a plethora of appliances, items and ancillaries which can help in making the house eco-friendly. A few elements of an ‘eco-home’ include an insulated and sealed building, controlled and monitored ventilation, improved indoor air mixture, fresh air, cost effective heating and cooling and lower energy consumption in the house. There are many products which can be included into the home in order to improve it.
Environmentally Responsible Paints
Household paints usually contain almost ten thousand chemicals of which around three hundred are known to be toxins and a hundred and fifty have been known to cause cancer. Paints contain ‘volatile organic compounds’ or VOCs which are unstable, carbon based compounds. They disperse into the air and then react and form ozone. Ozone causes many issues such as air pollution as well as health related problems such as breathing issues, aches, burning sensations, nausea, etc. VOCs have also been linked to cancer and kidney damage.
As the coat of paint starts to dry, VOCs are dispersed into the air in high quantities. The quantity of VOC inside the house is usually more than ten times the quantity outside the house and is almost a thousand times more soon after painting. VOC levels do not drop in the months after painting as they continue being dispersed in smaller quantities.
According to www.greenseal.org, only fifty percent of the potential VOC in paint is released in the first year following painting. Painters exposed regularly to VOCs and other paint vapors face the risk of several forms of illness such as cancer, brain damage and renal failure.
It is thus recommended to use paint which have zero VOC or low VOC content and these are now readily available in the market.
Appliance’s today come rated by Energy Star rating which have been modeled and created to provide the consumer with an effective method of comparing the energy efficiency of products. Energy efficiency is the ‘energy service per unit of energy consumption’. Star ratings are applicable in the following manner. For an air conditioner, its efficiency would be its cooling capacity per each unit of energy it utilizes. It is a simple input-output based equation. Branded appliances are rated as well.
While purchasing appliances for the home, it is important for the homeowner to research and compare various products and their efficiency ratings. One should visit siteswhich have information related to energy ratings and the star values of products instead of simply picking one blindly without considering its environmental consequences. To book online eco apartments visit our site.
Aside from these seemingly academic topics and changes, there are also some rudimentary steps which can go a long way in creating a healthy environment without spending too much money.
- Wherever and whenever possible, sunlight should be used for light.
- Open windows with effective anti-mosquito nets can be used to lower temperature at night instead of using an air-conditioner.
- Older incandescent bulbs should be replaced with compact fluorescent light bulbs which utilize less power and generate less heat.
- If the homeowner has the means, then he should install a programmable thermostat in order to monitor the climate in the house.
- The old adage, lights to be turned off when not in use.
- We do not understand how much energy we waste by simply leaving chargers and other appliances plugged in. Even though there may not be an appliance connected, it can till waste energy.
- Look for leaky taps and plumbing as they can not only waste resources, but also damage the house.
The Modern Sustainable Community
While on the subject of the eco-friendly home, it is also important to consider the community and the collective location of the eco-friendly house. A single house can create a healthy living environment for its inhabitants but they are still at risk from the harsh and toxic elements present in a normal neighborhood.
Sustainable communities are made and developed in order to reduce the sum total cost of living and also to decrease the environmental impact that a community has. These communities require their residents to work together in order to maintain their environmental economy. While looking for apartments and buildings, one should visit sites which explain the environmental impacts of localities and which identify environmentally sound and sustainable communities.
A sustainable community would have jobs and work opportunities within the community itself. This helps increase local economic growth and also reduces the dispersal of green house gases through transport. There are some topics such as brownfield/greyfield redevelopment and transit-oriented development (TOD) which factor into making a community sustainable.
The age for blissful ignorance has long gone and it is now that we have to take daily measures to save our environment, local and global.
Nadav Ziv, co-founder of the apartment booking agency TellaVista, has been an ardent supporter of sustainable communities and green living. Having great experience in the real estate sector, Nadav is aware of the great changes that need to happen in our communities in order to make them environmentally more viable and sustainable.