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Green and Healthy Housing: Improving Your Quality of Life PowerPoint Presentation
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Green and Healthy Housing: Improving Your Quality of Life

Green and Healthy Housing: Improving Your Quality of Life

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Green and Healthy Housing: Improving Your Quality of Life

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  1. Green and Healthy Housing: Improving Your Quality of Life Pamela R. Turner, PhD Associate Professor & Extension Housing Specialist University of Georgia prturner@uga.edu

  2. Why Green and Healthy Housing? • Holistic approach to housing • Environmental Factors • Reducing waste going to landfill • Recycling and reusing materials • Saving resources for future generations • Economic Issues • Reducing energy and water costs • Reducing health care costs • Health Concerns • Reducing asthma and allergy triggers • Eliminating tripping and falling hazards

  3. Healthy Homes Are: • Dry • Clean • Ventilated • Pest-Free • Safe • Contaminant-Free • Maintained

  4. Simple Ways to Live Greener • Reduce waste • Recycle & Reduce consumption • Use less water • Fix leaks & Wash full loads • Conserve energy • Switch to CFLs & Turn lights off • Decrease indoor contaminants • Reduce chemicals & clutter

  5. Decreasing Indoor Contaminants • People spend an average of 90% of their time indoors where organic pollutants are 2 to 5 times higher • Contaminants in your home: Lead Formaldehyde Mold Environmental Tobacco Smoke Radon Carbon Monoxide (CO) Pests Pesticides Asbestos Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs)

  6. Three ways to decrease contaminants in your home • Control what you bring in • Clean often using non-toxic or green cleaning products • Reduce clutter

  7. 1) Control what you bring in • Reduce consumption • Buy fewer household cleaning products • Don’t buy “extras” like air fresheners • Buy safer products (non-toxic or low VOC) • Add a doormat & leave your shoes at the door Greatest number of environmental exposures and risks for young children occur inside the home

  8. Reduce tracking in Where did you trod today? • Along a sidewalk covered with bird droppings? • In a gas station restroom? • Down the aisles of a grocery store? • In a dog park? • Across a lawn recently treated with chemicals? • Around an old building with peeling paint? • Through your back garden?

  9. Where does house dust come from? • Brought-In (30 - 40%) • Home-Grown (garbage & clutter) • What is in dust? • Lead dust, dead insects, pesticides, fungal spores, cigarette ashes, dust mites, dead skin cells, pet hair, etc. • Four footfalls • 85% of soil brought inside can be contained within the first 10 to 12 feet • SOLUTIONS: • Add a doormat • Take your shoes off

  10. 2) Clean often using non-toxic or green cleaning products Household cleaners were among the top 5 substances resulting in calls to U.S. Poison control Centers in 2008. Accounting for 213,595 calls. • Clean Often • Modify your habits • Green Cleaning • Buy fewer products, or • Make your own cleaning products

  11. Habit Modification: An ounce of prevention…. • Reduce the need to clean • Clean as you go • Capture the dirt (microfiber) • Schedule cleaning • Daily tasks (Wash dishes, wipe counters and spills, sweep floor, put things away, etc.) • Weekly tasks (Vacuum, damp mop, dust, etc.) • Get your family involved

  12. Green Cleaning • Buy and use fewer different products • Focus on basic cleaning ingredients • Alkalis • Acids • Surfactants • Abrasives • Disinfectant

  13. Green Cleaning • Alkalis • Purpose: Remove oily dirt and grease • Types: Baking soda, borax, washing soda • Acids • Purpose: remove hard-water deposits, discoloration, rust stains • Types: Vinegar, lemon juice

  14. Green Cleaning (cont.) • Surfactants • Purpose: Cut grease and grab onto the dirt • Types: Plant-based • Abrasives • Purpose: Scour off dirt, grease or particulate matter • Types: steel wool, nylon mesh

  15. Green Cleaning (cont.) • Disinfectants & Bleach • Purpose: Kill microorganisms on surfaces • Types: Chlorine bleach, hydrogen peroxide, sodium perborate, sodium percarbonate • Household cleaners making claims about germ killing or antimicrobial properties must meet FIFRA standards. • Federal Insecticide, Fungicide and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA)

  16. Homemade All-purpose Cleaner IngredientCost 3 T. white vinegar 32 oz @ $2.00 ½ tsp. washing soda 55 oz. @ $6.00 ½ tsp. vegetable oil based soap 32 oz. @ $5.00 2 c. hot water Makes 16 oz. Less than $10 per year Green All-purpose Cleaner 32 oz. @ $5.00 to $6.00 General All-purpose Cleaner 32 oz. @ $5.00 to $6.00 Save Green when Cleaning Green

  17. Beware of Greenwashing • No standardized definition for “green” • Look for: • Full ingredient disclosure • 3rd party certification • Green Seal, Cradle to Cradle, Design for the Environment • Online resources • The Green Guide (www.thegreenguide.com) • Consumer’s Union Eco-labels (www.greenerchoices.org) • FTC Green Guides (www.ftc.gov/opa/2010/10/greenguide.shtm)

  18. 3) Reduce Clutter

  19. Clutter Control = Pest & Dust Control Stop inviting pests into your home Reduce clutter and you reduce dust and hiding places for pests • Store food in pest-resistant containers. Petroleum Jelly

  20. Impacts on Health • Prevalence of asthma increased 75% from 1980-1994 • Economic cost is $19.7 billion annually • Average cost per person with asthma is $3,300 • Pests associated with asthma and asthma symptoms: • Mice • Cockroaches • Dust Mites

  21. Integrated Pest Management (IPM) • An environmentally and health friendly approach to managing household pests. • Control: • Entry • Food and water • Hiding Places • Use baits only when other methods don’t control the problem

  22. Tips for Living Greener • Add a doormat • Leave your shoes at the door • Make your own green cleaning products • Clean often • Reduce clutter More tips for living greener on: www.ugagreenway.com

  23. Pamela R. Turner, Ph.D. Extension Housing Specialist prturner@uga.edu www.ugagreenway.com