Home is the place where most people spend the majority of their time. There are many reasons to want to have clean, healthy home. However, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), indoor air quality is one of the five most urgent environmental health risks. Did you know that the air inside your home may be 100 times more polluted than the air outside? As a matter of fact, the many different fabrics and cleaners we use are making matters worse. What can you do about it?

1. BRING PLANTS INDOORS TO PURIFY THE AIR

There are many plants that improve the quality of the air inside your home. Amongst them all, however, there are three plants that are best at purifying the air including the money plant, the areca palm, and the mother-in-law’s tongue. You can find all three of these plants at a gardening center somewhere in your area. The Mother-in-law’s tongue is good at XXX, the money plant is good at XXX and the areca plam also XXX

NASA has also done extensive research to find the Top 30 plants that will purify indoor air at home. You can find that information here…

2. SORT IT OUT, TOSS IT IN
Keep recyclables out of the waste stream by separating trash from recyclables. Make an effort to find a recycle bin for your bottles, cans and paper and get into the habit of using it daily. Paper makes up 75% of America’s waste and most if it goes to landfills instead of recycling facilities. Water bottles are also recyclable however only 25% of water bottles end up in recycling centers and the rest go straight to the dump. In 2006, unrecycled water bottles in the U.S. required more than 7 million cubic yards of landfill space. That’s enough to fill approximately six football stadiums to the brim with water bottles!


3. BEWARE OF HAZARDOUS WASTE AND EWASTE
Do you know what hazardous waste is? As the name suggests, it is waste that can be hazardous to the environment or even ourselves. A few examples are batteries, light-bulbs, print cartridges, computer components, cell phones, radios, monitors, microwaves, etc. Practically everything electronic constitutes as ewaste. The parts can be recycled, but its very costly, so the waste is sold overseas! Imagine a carrier ship with cartons of waste being sold to an Asian country so the can recycle it and turn it into things like washers and dryers for us to purchase back from them. Learn where you can recycle hazardous waste in your neighborhood, and consider donating electronics before wasting them. Otherwise, try to find a local electronics recycling center that will not ship the waste overseas, burning even more fuels. Cell phones: www.collectivegood.comwww.phones4charity.orgwww.wirefly.org
RECYCLE YOUR JUNK MAIL
Whether its over the internet or in our mail boxes, we all get junk mail. Whether or not we choose to open it up or disregard it is another matter altogether. Either way, when you’re through shuffling through all the junk mail, be sure to put it into the recycle bin instead of the trash can. Although you will not be saving yourself any money by recycling junk mail, www.sort.org says that if you could “stem” or even stop the junk mail for one year you could save 140 gallons of water needed to make the paper, keep 92 lb. of carbon dioxide out of the air from delivery, and keep the poor mail man from carrying 41 lb. of junk to your mail box each year. Finally in the end you can save yourself the time of sorting through the junk. Step 5 says…

5. UNSUBSCRIBE FROM UNWANTED CATALOGS AND JUNK MAIL
Don’t let the junk into your mailbox. Keep it out by unsubscribing from all the unwanted catalogs you receive each month. Visit www.catalogchoice.org, whose mission is to stop the nineteen billion catalogs from being mailed to American shoppers each and every year. If you are currently receiving paper catalogs from companies that you want to stay subscribed to, see if you can change to an electronic version online that you can receive in your email inbox.

6. FIND NEW USES FOR PACKAGING CONTAINERS I’ve already mentioned using refillable water containers to save plastic water bottles from entering the landfills and oceans. Another kind of container to reuse would be any glass or plastic jars you acquire from purchasing items like applesauce or pasta sauce. You can reuse those jars to store items in your pantry, in your shelf, or use them for art projects or in the garden. I use one to feed my cats. Another option is to turn small containers into traps for garden pests. Fill a small container with beer and put it out in the garden to catch harmful pests like slugs.

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