Green living: Save Our Earth By Living Green

Being a green homemaker

Redecorating your home and maintaining a green ethos can sometimes be a difficult thing to achieve. However, with so many more eco-friendly products available today, it is possible though it will cost you more.

Many household paints contain volatile organic compounds (VOCs) – these are the ones you want to avoid. Normal household paints can contain up to 10,000 chemicals and many of these are toxic. The most harmful are VOCs which vaporise easily and react to produce ozone which is an air pollutant. VOCs have been linked with cancer, kidney damage, respiratory problems, headaches, watery eyes and nausea.

As paint containing VOCs dries, the VOCs are released into the air – and household air contains much higher levels of VOCs than outside air. It doesn’t stop when the paint is dry either – VOCs will continue to seep into the atmosphere for several years.

Now you can choose to avoid VOCs in paint by buying one of the many organic and natural paints available. Although these paints are more expensive, it’s far more comforting to know that if you use them your family won’t be at risk of breathing in any more VOCs.

Of course, you can do the same with the furniture you buy for your home. You can choose to buy products that are made with naturally-sourced materials and don’t contain toxins. Many furniture stores sell cheap furniture that isn’t green, and you’ll have to weigh up how much you can afford to spend to be green when buying big items such as sofas and chairs. Even in a sofas sale, you are unlikely to find soft furnishings made out of eco-friendly materials at a low price.

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You’re more likely to be able to stay green while spending less on wooden furniture – especially if it’s made of bamboo. Bamboo is in plentiful supply, and is a renewable source of wood, so you’ll be helping reduce the impact of global deforestation by buying products made from it. Bamboo can be cut without the whole plantation being destroyed, and regrows very quickly. Bamboo plantations also put 35% more oxygen back into the atmosphere than other tree species.

So there are ways and means to be green while decorating and furnishing your home, but generally it will be more expensive.

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