Each year, millions of pounds of demolished structures and their contents are tossed into waste containers and dumped into holes in the ground. Toxic chemicals are used ubiquitously for painting, varnishing, and for manufacturing home remodeling materials like vinyl flooring, plastic moulding, and more.
If you’re like many people and planning to remodel your house for the New Year, reconsider your impact on the environment before you even buy your materials.
There are many ways you can reduce your home’s carbon footprint and help save this earth we all enjoy so much.
Ordinary paint releases toxic fumes into the air when you apply it and for years afterward.
These are called “volatile organic compound,” and they not only hurt the earth, but they can impact your family’s health over time.
Partly due to this, the EPA has reported that indoor air is typically five times more toxic than outdoor air.
Low and Zero-Voc paint contains no or trace amounts of these compounds, making them a better choice for your home.
These paints cost only slightly more than traditional paint, and you can rest easy with the knowledge that your family is not breathing in toxic emissions from your home’s paint.
As the article, “Steps to Planning New Year’s Painting Projects” looks at keep the environment in mind when painting is in your plans.
Now that more people are aware of the toll paid for clearing trees and milling wood, reclaimed wood is more popular as a way to green up any building project. You don’t even have to know personally of a demolition project where reclaimed wood is available.
There are now online clearinghouses where you or your general contractor can shop for reclaimed wood that might come from places like gymnasium floors, old houses, old pubs, old government buildings, and more.
Reclaimed wood comes with a lot more than just the wood itself.
When you use reclaimed wood in your home remodeling project, you will have a story to tell about where it came from.
Imagine having a piece of an old professional basketball gymnasium floor as your kitchen flooring.
Antique Light Fixtures
Instead of going to the store and buying brand new light fixtures for your home, why not visit antique stores or charity shops to find lighting fixtures?
Workers will often save old fixtures when they are tearing down buildings.
It costs them money to drop materials off at the landfill, and even they might recognize the historic value of an old chandelier or wall sconce.
Antique light fixtures will need some tender loving care before they are ready to light up your home, but with some metal cleaner and new wiring, you should be able to have something really beautiful and unique for your electrician to install.
No one will argue that it’s easier and faster to run down to the shops and buy all new things for your home remodel.
But when you take a moment to consider the cost to Mother Nature, you’ll likely see the value in being discerning in your choice of home remodeling materials.
Photo credit: BigStockPhoto.com
About the Author: Kate Supino writes about living holistically, in-tune with nature.