We all love our homes and we’ll do anything to protect it. But have you ever stopped to wonder how well we’re taking care of everyone’s home—the planet.
Fortunately, you can design your home to be kinder to Mother Earth. Below are a just a few green design ideas you should look into:
If you’re going to tile your bathroom, the most earth-friendly option would be ceramic tiles. They are made from natural and abundant raw materials, or recycled from waste products generated by the production of conventional tiles. With lifespans that take them well into 50 years, they also help lessen the amount of discarded tiles in our landfills.
Want to make yard maintenance easier and help the environment at the same time? Then consider installing hardscaping like flagstones, brick pathways, and wood decking on your lawn or backyard. Since these materials are not organic, you won’t have to water them or use fertilizers that can potentially pollute the soil and water sources.
Lighten Your Roof Color
Repaint your roof a lighter color so it deflects more sunlight and heat. This little trick can help keep your home cooler so you won’t have to use more electricity on air conditioning or ventilation.
Use VOC-Free Paints
Many paints contain volatile organic compounds (VOCs), carbon-based chemicals that easily evaporate into the atmosphere. Unfortunately, when VOCs react with nitrogen oxides and sunlight it produces ozone, which can contribute to smog formation and damage crops, among other environmental effects.
Grey Water Cistern
The average household consumes about 1000-1500 liters of water a day. To help reduce water usage, you can install a “grey water” cistern that collects rainwater or water from your drains so it can be reused to wash your car or to water your garden.
Lawns are one of the biggest water guzzlers in the home since they require constant irrigation to remain green and attractive. Fortunately, there are now artificial turf options like Limonta’s Tuscany line that look and feel just like real grass without the watering requirements. Artificial turf also does not need fertilizers and pesticides, which can run off your lawn and pollute underground water sources. Lastly, it’s made from environmentally friendly materials so kids and pets can play safely on them.
Why buy new furniture if you can get them second-hand? Most pre-owned furnishings are still in great condition, and choosing them means that raw materials won’t have to be consumed to create new products. Another options is to go for furniture made of reclaimed wood, previously used lumber that is then repurposed to give it a second lease on life.
Admittedly, installing solar panels require a substantial investment, but solar power is the cleanest form of energy there is. And as discussed in this piece from Rappler, one household was able to slash their hefty electric bill to half thanks to them. As an added incentive, you can sell any excess power you produce back to Meralco in exchange for credits on your next bill. You can choose to buy a few panels first, then purchase more down the line as your budget allows it.
As you can see, you don’t have to look far to find ways to help the environment. Sometimes, you just have to start at home.
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