Why Go Green For Your Kitchen Remodel?

What's the most important environmental problem with a conventional kitchen remodel?

Energy consumption, followed by bad lighting and bad ventilation. The kitchen is the most energy-intensive room in the house. Oversized and energy-inefficient appliances are the number one problem with conventional kitchen remodels.

Do we really need refrigerators that can store an excessive amount of food? How much of that are you really eating? And how big do we really need that microwave to be? 

Bigger is definitely not better in this area.

 

What environmental problems are associated with using a conventional kitchen?

  • Use of too much energy as the result of poor appliance choices

  • Overconsumption of water due to incorrectly sized dishwashers

  • Chemical sensitization due to overexposure to emissions from cabinetry, insulation and flooring products containing formaldehyde

  • Overconsumption of energy due to poor natural lighting and ventilation

  • Poor air quality due to inadequate ventilation

  • Excessive use of environmentally degrading cleaning products (e.g., chlorine bleach, ammonia) because of high-maintenance surfaces and floors

  • Generation of too much garbage because of lack of space for storage of recyclables and compostables

 

What are the health benefits of the green remodeling process, and of using a green kitchen?

First of all, there are positive mental health benefits of having a brighter, better-ventilated work space. As for the physical health benefits, having a green kitchen brings us less or no exposure to toxic chemicals (such as finishes, paints, cleaning products, etc.).

 

What are some favorite innovations or design ideas for a green kitchen?

  • Lots of operable windows for natural daylight and free ventilation

  • A receptacle for compostable materials near the work prep area

  • Easy access to and sufficient room for recyclables storage in the kitchen

  • A dish-drawer dishwasher, which is great for smaller loads

  • A small, energy-efficient refrigerator/freezer

  • Hardwood floors, which are easier to stand on than stone or tile, have no grout to clean and mop up easily with soap and water

  • A place to grow herbs

  • Sufficient and easy to use storage design that doesn't encourage hoarding

  • A cold box, which keeps fruits and veggies such as apples and potatoes fresh without requiring refrigeration

Resource - greenhomeguide.com

Stay tuned for next month's post - How to make your kitchen Green!