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Project green house

Do more than just keep potted plants in your house to save the environment.

india Updated: Mar 13, 2010 01:34 IST
Aroma Sah

After discovering eco-friendly clothes, bags and cars, it’s time to turn your home a little eco-friendly, too.

“All things we buy, (somewhere down the line) have an impact on the environment — from the way they are extracted, manufactured and processed to the distance they travel to reach us,” says Ashwani Narula, owner, Bench Craft.

Paint, wood, glass, metal, textiles and furniture all can have a negative impact on the environment, but with a little effort their eco-friendly alternatives can be procured.

Recycling is the key
“The interiors of any house can be turned environment-friendly by using natural materials. For example, in case of fabrics, use cotton, silks and their blends. All dying agents used can be vegetable based,” says interior designer Monica Kamal.

“Glass and metal have an advantage — both of them can be recycled several times without losing their quality,” says Narula.

Using recycled glass and metal helps reduce the amount of resources needed to produce these materials from scratch.

The process of recycling uses a lot less energy than what is required to make new glass and metal.

Easy way to hard things
“In case of hard goods, excessive use of wood should be discouraged and its substitutes may be used. Here, an easy replacement is UPVC doors and windows.

In case of soft furnishings, natural fibres are more eco-friendly than polyster,” says Kamal.

Green alternatives:

Use eco-friendly paint, as volatile organic compounds are not just bad for the environment but also dangerous for your health.

Textile production processes can be harmful, so even when choosing eco-friendly products, make sure they’re renewable. Eco-friendly choices include organic cotton, wool and hemp.

Buy second-hand furniture or items made from recycled or reclaimed materials.

Do away with harsh bleaches and detergents. Clean things at home with vinegar, hydrogen peroxide and baking soda.