Once our house or school is sustainably built or renovated (or even if it isn’t), it is time to look at how we furnish our spaces and live in, and maintain them.

Furnishings and Finishes:

And how do we live in our homes and schools?

  • Avoid toxins. One might carry out a wonderfully sustainable renovation of a home, school or office and then clean the floors and tables with toxic cleaning products that are absorbed through the skin and are inhaled by the occupants.Environmental Working Group, a nonprofit, does an excellent job of rating products – from cleaning products to cosmetics –  and identifying things to look out for in our daily lives.Also, the 10 Americans video is very powerful video about what toxins are found in babies at birth:
  • Plan a method of drinking water filtration in homes, schools and offices. Quit buying water in plastic bottles!
  • Recycling.  We all recycle, right?  I am now so surprised and disappointed when I am in a café that doesn’t recycle (and don’t get me started on the airlines!).  So now the next frontier is composting.  Do you garden?  If not, perhaps a community garden or neighbor would love your compost.

It is all about becoming educated and making decisions.  And before you let out the heavy sigh, isn’t that true about everything else in life as well?

Nancy K. Harrod