Posted on 10 October 2012.
This was written by Suzzane Edwards of Kitchen Cabinetry.
A green home is synonymous to healthy, clean and sustainable living. And when it comes to creating a truly green kitchen we must consider every single detail. Most of these kitchen countertops are made from recycled materials and could be recycled again if the homeowner chooses to move on another kitchen remodeling project. With the world struggling to cope with dwindling resources, choosing environmentally friendly materials for your kitchen countertops is a simple way of expressing your support for a greener and more sustainable future.
Wood has long been used in making countertops. These are sturdy materials and can be crafted into many designs. Although some might contend that these require cutting down trees, wood is a building material that could be sustained by responsible logging and replanting.
Wood countertops are not only produced from freshly cut wood. It could also be made from sawdust or other wood byproducts. A huge part of using wood in green kitchens is its ability to give a more natural look and feel.
Granite and Stone Countertops
Stone countertops are perfect for bringing a classical and traditional touch to any kitchen. These however could be found in the higher price range so be ready for the costs. Stone countertops maybe pricier but are definitely durable, making them a perfect long term addition to any green kitchen.
Using glass for countertops is a simple way of adding a unique touch to your kitchen. Glass countertops can come in a myriad of designs and styles. Most people would think that a glass countertop is merely a clear and glossy finish. These could also come in the shape of colorful glass styles that could be tailored to match any kitchen design. Interesting glass countertop designs includes Ice Stone finishes.
Steel is a building material that could be recycled indefinitely. It could be melted and reshaped for use as building materials. Steel countertops are perfect for modern kitchens. It could also provide a powerful contrast to a wood finished kitchen blending traditional and modern kitchen designs. Steel countertops are durable and perfect for working kitchens. However, these require constant cleaning because it is a magnet for fingerprints and watermarks.
Plastic and Resins
Some of us may be surprised that resin based countertops are included in the list. These are made from recycled plastic and come in a variety of eye-popping colors. Another great thing about them is that these are totally recyclable. Greater demand for plastic and resin countertops keeps these from filling in our landfills or polluting the environment.
Part of being labeled “green” includes the material’s ability to be recycled. Changes in taste or kitchen design may lead homeowners to discard their old countertops and the need to purchase new ones. Using green materials for your countertops reduces the need to produce more materials and preserves precious natural resources for future use.
This post was contributed by a guest writer. If you’d like to guest post for Naturally Earth Friendly please check out our Become An Author page for details on how YOU can share your tips with our readers.
Posted in Construction, Green Real Estate, Lifestyle
Posted on 19 June 2012.
This guest post is by Erika Celario of TONERGREEN blog.
“Going Green,” you’ve probably encountered this term a thousand times over the internet, in newspapers or ad campaigns on TV. You might also be wondering, “what does it really mean?” Well, if you think taking an action to preserve our natural resources to help the environment needs a considerable amount of time and effort or a serious devotion to our planet, then you might want to reconsider that thought. “Going Green” actually doesn’t need to cost you that much effort, time or money. It actually can be one of the easiest things to do. In fact, “Going Green” actually saves you money. All you need is to simply change some habits and the products you support to easily put a tint of green in your lifestyle.
Going Green In Your Home
You can go green at your house, simply by using electronic appliances and products. Why don’t you change those regular bulbs you use to CFL (Compact Fluorescent Lights) and LED (Light Emitting Diode) bulbs? These types of light bulbs are more energy-efficient and last up to ten times longer than incandescent bulbs. Or why don’t you choose buying Energy-Star qualified appliances the next time you hit the market for new electronics? Energy-Star qualified appliances use less energy, save money and protect the environment. You can also cut down the amount of chemicals you are using in your kitchen and bathroom by using eco-friendly products instead. Companies like Coleman, Woolrich and Desert Essence make green soaps, shampoos and lotions. Incorporate the 3Rs in your everyday life: reduce, recycle and reuse. There are a lot of non-biodegradable materials that you can still use like those plastic bags. By simply reusing your plastic bags, you are helping the environment reduce waste on its landfills. And talk about non-biodegradable waste, plastic takes 500 years to break down.
“Don’t blow it—good planets are hard to find.”
- Times Magazine
Going Green In Your Office
You can easily incorporate a green lifestyle even in the office. You might even suggest the following eco-friendly tips to your management considering the fact that these tips doesn’t just help the environment they also reduce your office’s expenses: (1) develop a green purchasing policy, most eco-friendly materials cost less, like recycled papers and remanufactured toner cartridges, which are also called eco-friendly cartridges in your office printing; (2) use power strips to turn off electronics when not in use. 75% of the electricity used to power office equipment can be consumed while these electronics are turned off. You can simply avoid this by pugging them into a power strip that can be shut off at the end of each day to consume less electricity; (3) buy Energy Star qualified electronic products, Energy Star computers, printers and other business machines conserve up to 75% of your electricity compared to standard models. Energy Star products saved Americans more than $3.5 billion in energy costs; (4) recycle your office materials, you don’t have to throw away those unwanted one-sided printouts, they can be used for printing drafts and writing notes; and (5) green commuting, according to the 2011 Annual Urban Mobility Report, American workers spend an average of 47 hours per year commuting through rush hour traffic. You can avoid this hassle by carpooling, taking public transit, biking or walking. This reduces the considerable amount of 23 billion gallons of gas wasted in traffic each year.
You see, “Going Green” won’t necessarily complicate or change your lifestyle drastically. It just requires simple changes to make a positive impact on our environment. “Going Green” doesn’t have to be expensive. It’s actually the other way around. By making small changes in your everyday routine, you can save yourself some green while helping the world become greener place.
This post was contributed by a guest writer. If you’d like to guest post for Naturally Earth Friendly please check out our Become An Author page for details on how YOU can share your tips with our readers..
Posted in Energy, Energy Conservation, Lifestyle