Many leading architects and builders these days accept that Earth-conscious does not mean ‘doing-without’. Quite contrary, luxurious, glamorous, and fun homes can be environmentally conscious too. Sporting green roofs, drawing energy from geothermal power and solar panels, might not be the only ways to reduce your home’s footprint on the planet. Here are some of the cost-efficient ways of creating a luxury home that can be eco-friendly and sustainable.
Replace your home’s lighting
Though they cost more than the regular bulbs, compact fluorescent lighting (CFL) bulbs last ten times than the regular incandescent bulbs. This means that for every single CFL used, eight bulbs are saved from landfill purgatory. By consuming 75% lesser energy, CFL bulbs also reduce carbon dioxide in the air. For a single CFL, 500 pounds of carbon dioxide is reduced per year from the environment. 17 CFL bulbs have the equivalent effect of taking a car off the road for a year.
Eliminate plastic use
The next time you are at the supermarket try and carry your own reusable canvas tote bag to eschew plastic bags. Non-biodegradable petroleum plastic is a growing concern for the planet. Each year thousands of marine animals choke down to death by mistaking plastic trash for morsels, including endangered species like the leatherback turtle. America alone runs through about 100 million plastic bags annually, which has led to the build-up of a plastic vortex, the size of Texas in the North Pacific Ocean.
Choose sustainable and locally available materials
To reduce the carbon footprint of the modern day constructions, many designers and architects are choosing locally sourced materials. Depending on the resources that a particular region is rich in, a sustainable home can be built from stone, wood, thatch, or clay.
Use Energy-star rated appliances
In addition to slashing about a third of your electric bill, Energy-star rated appliance, electronics and lighting can be a big advantage to your home. While an average home pumps out two times the amount of greenhouse gas emissions as an average car, the use of such appliances greatly reduces your home’s energy usage. By saving on the total energy that your appliances are draining, you can also save on tax and electricity bills.
To enjoy some fresh air and sunshine as well as relax the mind, many people indulge in gardening. This hobby is a greatly rewarding one, as it can also help you become more environmentally inclined. By promoting a healthy cycle of growth and decomposition, gardening promotes the general health of the soil as well as the environment by providing a rich release of oxygen. You can create a vegetable patch to plant some organic breeds and derive the benefits of healthy eating as well as sustainable living.
Harness natural sources
By using the energy derived from low-impact sources like wind, sun, and hydroelectricity, you can greatly reduce your dependence on the coal-burning power plants, these are the major source of greenhouse gas emissions in the current times. By installing solar panels, many people are trying to reduce their carbon footprint and get off the grid. Harnessing power from renewable fuels like wind and sun is completely free and makes your electricity bill slide down.
Dual pane, low-emittance windows
For a more natural way to heat and cool your indoor environment, you can choose low-emittance windows that have greater insulation efficiency. These windows reflect back UV rays that can be harmful to you and your belongings and also enhance the efficiency of your installed ventilation system.
Sustainable homes do not necessarily have to compromise on comfort to be environmentally conscious. Adopting an environment-friendly lifestyle can be done in simple and cost-efficient ways by using LED bulbs, paper bags, solar panels, organic produce etc.