From Dean Dowd on September 17, 2008 in Green Remodeling
It may not be Christmas, and it sure isn’t anywhere near my birthday, but still I find myself full of wishes. As you know, there is only one thing to do with wishes: make a list. Lately these wishes have been quite green in nature. So being that it’s Green Wednesday, I thought I’d share it with you; just to see, you know, if green minds really do think alike. These are just my top 10:
- Cork floors. I wrote about cork floors back in April, and ever since they have been on my wish list. Not only are they eco-friendly, but they’re great shock absorbers, naturally colorful, and easy to install and maintain. Why so green? The cork used in the floors come from the bark of the trees, leaving the tree to continue growing!
- I want to be an Energy Star! Part of what makes going green so attractive is that it is a sound investment. Energy Star appliances (refrigerators, dishwashers, clothes washers) save money now and the environment later. Here’s to the hum of energy savings at work!
- Let there be daylighting! As my green dreams grow, I dream of large south-facing windows, skylights, and the natural heat of the sun. Daylighting: a great way to open up your house to light and warmth. Who needs a lamp at noon?
- New windows. Even if I can’t afford a brand new living room, full of sunlight, I could at least upgrade my windows. Anyone with an old window, especially wood or metal, knows the feeling of cold drafts and the unending rumble of the furnace. Windows are notorious weak spots for insulation. New, more efficient windows can cut energy costs by a considerable amount; one big green step in the right direction.
- Keeping water flow on the down-low. More and more, water is getting to be quite the commodity. Urban residents especially are getting their water shipped from farther and farther away, increasing the stress on the environment and utility bills. Installing low-flow toilets, faucets, and shower heads is like a green makeover for the home.
- A grayer shade of green. While I’m on the subject of water. Think about all the water you probably use for your gardening and landscaping. What if you could recycle inside water to take care of outdoor needs? Greywater systems reuse sink, shower, and laundry water for landscaping and other non-potable water needs. It’s an easy, and ancient, way to save water.
- Local, Local, Local. Buying local food and products is a great and communal way to go green and greens up your home more than you might think. Not only does it support your community, but it also cuts down on costly transportation; cutting down on fuel use builds up the environment, one loaf of bread at a time.
- Recycling, take advantage of it. People recycle, and I want to take advantage of that fact. It turns out that it’s not very difficult. There are all kinds of recycled building products out there that I can use to fulfill my wish list. Recycled countertops, flooring, and tiles are just a few.
- Vintage style is vintage green. I like to incorporate vintage or salvaged materials into remodeling or home decorating. It’s that “reuse” part of our national green mantra. Old furniture, old hardware, old sinks. Going vintage adds so much to the home and there is still so much to wish for.
- Solar this, solar that. What better way to get green than to stop using fossil-fueled electricity altogether? Solar electric systems are dotting the American landscape today and their numbers are growing rapidly. Even if you can’t go that far, there are tons of ways to go solar. There’s enough to fill a whole other wish list, check ‘em out!
Want to start making a dent in your green wish list right now? Go for it with certified local contractors that have the experience and the reputation to make it happen.