Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Top Trends for 2012 Eco-Friendly Home

Over the past few years we have seen a decided move towards eco-friendly homes and lifestyles. 2012 is likely to continue that trend, with new products and common practices making sustainable living more convenient than ever.

Here are the top forecasted trends for 2012.

Improved Efficiency

More green builders and eco-friendly citizens are seeking out strategies for a more efficient home. This trend is all about making efficiency cost-effective and effortless. Homes are trending smaller, with proper insulation and energy efficient windows. Market trends and government tax credits make installing solar panels more affordable than ever before and “greywater recycling” systems allow the home owner to reuse water from sinks and bathtubs. Likewise, rain barrels are a very simple method for collecting rainwater for yard use.

More Composting

Most eco-conscious families are already recycling plastic, aluminum and paper, but new composting systems are making it even easier to recycle food waste at home. Bokashi composting uses fermentation rather than aeration to break down food into nutrient-rich compost and/or compost tea. Mixed with EM-1® kitchen composting accelerant, the result is a faster, less smelly and bug-free compost cycle. This system is fantastic for dense urban communities as there is virtually no decomposition smell to offend neighbors and the only space needed is a couple five-gallon buckets and a place to bury the fermented food wastes. For homes that rely on septic tanks, the very same technology can be applied for septic tank maintenance. Naturally occurring septic tank enzymes and bacteria are supplemented to the tank for greater decomposition efficiency. The result is fewer odors, lower maintenance costs, improved drainfield performance and reduced groundwater pollution.

The Diner Table

Knowledgeable consumers understand that diet not only affects their family’s health but can also impact the environment. Many families are adopting a “paleo style” approach to eating, eliminating overtly processed foods and opting for nutrient dense “real” foods. When given the choice they will always select organically-grown produce and prefer locally sourced foods that require fewer fossil fuels to move from farm to table. They select meats that are produced on farms that are certified organic and avoid mega-farms that produce meat in a non-sustainable way. Many families have even begun producing their own vegetables, fruit, and herbs, or raising their own chickens in backyard coops. Using EM Technology® in your garden will help you produce fruits and vegetables that have higher vitamins and minerals and enzymes. You can also use EM Technology® around chicken coops to control odors and help keep the area clean. Add a little EM Bokashi to the ground area for scratching and the birds will be happy. If raising ducks, you can also add some EMX® Ceramics and EM-1® to keep the water they swim in clean.

Reducing Chemical Output

Most households use and expel dangerous chemicals in their home, including bleach, ammonia, drain cleaner, detergent and hard surface cleaners. These chemicals wash down the drain and end up in our community’s soil and ground water. They may also aggravate chemical sensitivities in family members. For this reason, many families are actively replacing chemically-laden products with green cleaning agents. Likewise eco-families are replacing chemical fertilizers in their gardens and lawns with organic soil amendments and conditioners that naturally improve soil quality without chemical runoff. The result is a home and garden free of harsh chemicals and the associated risks.

Additionally, growing plants in the home helps keep the air inside clean and rich in oxygen. Some plants such as Gerbera Daisies are known to remove Benzene from the air. If you have a new home, off-gassing from chemicals in the building materials could cut down simply by growing some plants inside. Plants also provide therapeutic benefits and aesthetic benefit to a home. Growing better plants is easy using juice from the fermented food buckets to provide a liquid fertilizer and spraying some EM-1® on the plants once or twice per week.

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