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Bamboo has been recorded as one of the fastest growing plants on earth, with some species growing several feet per day. It's tensile strength is comparable to steel and it is harvested every 5-7 years as opposed to every 20-120 years for hardwoods. Made into bamboo flooring, it is beautiful, durable and sustainable. For these reasons, bamboo has become one of the most admired types of residential and commercial floorings installed today.
New Green Home Regulations - An Infographic
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ThumbnailNew Green Home Government Regulations
The Obama administration has invested more than 90 billion dollars in clean energy and is on a path to double renewable energy generation from 2008 levels by 2012.
Check out some of the country's newest green laws and how they can affect you.
New Regulation: 17 States Enact Low-Phosphate Laws for Detergents
The average American uses about 25 gallons of hazardous chemical products in his or her home. The majority come from cleaning products. More than 1.4 million American, exposed to household chemicals were referred to poison control centers in 2001. Every day more than 32 million pounds of household cleaning products are poured down the drain in America. Despite the best efforts of wastewater treatment plants, many of the toxic substances within these products find their way to our lakes and rivers. Environmental officials list about 100 lakes, reservoirs, and other water bodies as Ã‚Âœphosphorus impaired, meaning they violate federal and state water quality standards for fishing and swimming. According to the consumer products safety commission, 150 common household chemicals are linked to allergies, birth defects, cancer, and psychological abnormalities. Result of Law Less toxins in our environment, however you also get fewer results with phosphorus-free cleaners. What Can You Do? Make and use homemade all-purpose cleaner: Ã‚Â¼ cup baking soda + Ã‚Â½ gallon water + Ã‚Â½ cup vinegar
New Regulation: Lawn Fertilizer Restrictions, Which Limit the Percentage of Phosphorus used in Fertilizers, Goes into Effect in New York to Reduce Toxins in our Environment
Phosphorus from fertilizers are carried from lawns into ponds, rivers, lakes and streams by stormwater runoff. The phosphorus reduces the oxygen in the water which leads to dead fish and degraded drinking water. More than 70 waterbodies used for drinking water, fisheries, or recreation in New York are impaired or negatively affected due to phosphorus. Phosphorus from fertilizers damage storm-sewer systems, which can cost the taxpayers millions of dollars. Reducing the amount of phosphorus in fertilizers is a more cost effective solution. Result of Law Less toxins in our environment and reduction in sewage system repairing costs, which saves taxpayer money. What Can You Do? Use naturally occurring organic fertilizers like worms, manure, and seaweed.
New Regulation: New York Law Requires Buildings Larger than 50,000 Square Feet to Pay for Energy Audits and Tune-ups of their Base Building Systems, Like A/C, Water Heater, Boilers, and Elevators Every Ten Years.
A/C units, water heaters, boilers, and elevators use a lot of electricity. To produce this electricity, power plants burn fuel and generate CO2, one of the causes of global warming. Maintaining air conditioners and other appliances in the home will lower CO2 emissions. Energy consumption in the average home:
o TV 9.9%
o Washer and Dryer 1.6%
o Dishwasher 1.6%
o A/C and Furnace ÃƒÂƒÃ‚Â‚28.3%
o Refrigerator ÃƒÂƒÃ‚Â”16.1%
o Lighting 16.1%
o Other Appliances 25.2%
Result of Law
Less energy is used to operate appliances because they are consistently being inspected for efficiency, which not only saves the homeowner money, but it helps make our planet cleaner.
What Can You Do?
Turn down your thermostat by just one degree and save $44-$73 a year on your power bill. Plant trees around your home. Shade from trees can cut summer A/C needs by up to 50%.
New Regulation: Maine Adopts a Law that Requires companies that Make Fluorescent Light Bulbs, and Other Lighting that Includes Mercury, to Adopt a Recycling Program.
Mercury and its compounds are highly toxic substances for humans. Methylmercury and elemental mercury are of the highest concern. They are poisonous to the nervous system. Result of Law Recycling lights that contain mercury will reduce the amount of toxins released into our environment.
What Can You Do?
Switch from incandescent to CFL light bulbs. Turn off unneeded lights. Install motion sensors on exterior lights.
Go Green Today With These 5 Eco-Tips:
1. Run your home on renewable energy generated by the sun.
2. Seal any gaps in doors that could allow drafts in and out of your home.
3. Treat your windows with low-emittance coating.
4. Install outdoor hose shut-off valves to prevent water waste from a leaky hose faucet.
5. Collect run-off rain in a barrel for use in watering plants and grass.