Green Home Building Guide Vol III
There are many environmentally conscious companies & individuals making sustainable construction and renovation decisions that if executed properly, could lead to the lessening of waste, conservation of materials, creation of green-energy, and result in unique and effective home-building projects. The Green Homebuilding Guide is PahRoo’s periodical, that focuses on these eco-friendly options and provides insights into the various ways you can reduce your carbon footprint.
Vol. 3Eco-Friendly Flooring & Countertops
Kitchens have become an exciting canvas for sustainable minded individuals to explore the possibilities of eco-friendly materials. Not only are the ‘green’ materials being used much more sustainable, they are aesthetically pleasing, practical and durable. Two of the most common places in the kitchen to begin implementing the use of greener building materials are, flooring and countertops.
There are many great options when it comes to eco-friendly flooring. According to The World Floor Covering Association, green flooring falls into one of the following categories:
Sustainable (wood flooring)
Eco-friendly (bamboo area rugs)
Contains recycled content (rubber flooring)
Recyclable (vinyl flooring)
Leaves a small carbon footprint (wool carpeting)
Has low VOCs (Volatile Organic Compounds) (stone)
This list of materials can serve as an excellent starting point, but there are a few other considerations when looking for eco-friendly flooring.
If possible, recycled or reusable materials should be utilized. A great example of how to creatively incorporate recycled materials into your next flooring project can be found at The Eco Center in Little Rock Arkansas. The Eco Center boasts rooms that feature flooring made of beer bottles, paper mache, and recycled rubber… very cool!
Additionally, one should always keep in mind the environmental impact of transporting and installing their eco-friendly floors. The toll of transportation can be substantially reduced by shopping locally for your flooring materials. In regards to installation, always choose non-toxic and water-based adhesives in order to ensure a totally green process.
Eco-friendly countertops are becoming more common in households throughout the world. There are green options available these days that are both extremely beautiful and incredibly sustainable. Some of our favorite materials being used for countertops include:
Bamboo - Perfect for the wood countertop connoisseur, bamboo is much more sustainable and cost effective than typical showroom options. Not only does a well treated bamboo countertop look gorgeous, it is remarkably durable as well. Increasing in popularity over the last decade, bamboo is a perfect combination of environmentally friendly & renowned longevity.
Green Concrete - Many of you may already be familiar with concrete countertops, as they have been somewhat popular for years. It was not until the advent of ‘Green Concrete”, that concrete based material became eco-friendly. Through a mixture that contains a small amount of concrete and environmentally friendly by products, highly resistant and durable countertops can be manufactured. These countertops are a fantastic choice to consider, and come in practically any color you could dream of.
Recycled Glass - By combining shards of glass with the aforementioned green concrete, you can create an absolutely stunning recycled glass countertop. The manufacturing process associated with utilizing recycled glass is extremely earth conscious, and leaves room for multiple design options. Any fan of terrazzo will likely love the look of recycled glass, which comes in multiple color combinations.
As with flooring, once the materials are chosen for your eco-friendly countertop, one should additionally consider the environmental impact of transportation and installation.
Lower your carbon footprint, and consider eco--friendly options for your next flooring or countertop renovation.