5 Steps to a Healthy Home

Exterior of Southface Institute

Southface Institute President Andrea Pinabell shares five ways to make your home more eco-friendly.

Q: What can I do to be more resource-efficient?
A: Invest in a smart thermostat with programmable options, along with ENERGY STAR® appliances, low-flow toilets, on-demand water heaters, and LED light bulbs. You’ll save resources and recoup your initial costs quickly with lower utility bills.

Q: What are some ways to improve indoor air quality? 
A: Mold and other allergens thrive in closed, moist environments. Dusting and vacuuming, using your stove’s hood vent when you cook, and changing your HVAC filters regularly can help. Also, burn only soy and beeswax candles, and avoid synthetic air fresheners.

Q: How can I limit the use of chemicals in my home? 
A: Use natural alternatives for cleaning, such as vinegar, lemon juice, and baking soda. To reduce pesticide use, keep pests out by reducing gaps in doors and windows, and use repellents with natural oils like peppermint.

Q: How can I reduce packaging waste in my home?
A: Cut down on the use of plastics and recyclables in general. Many items we think are recyclable aren’t, hence, contaminating our recycling bin contents, which then go to a landfill. Start by avoiding plastic bags, straws and coffee pods, and buy food in bulk.

Q: How can I waste less food?
A: Create a weekly menu and buy only what you need. Add smaller portions to your plate at buffets and potlucks. Also, store leftovers in the freezer immediately, so you won’t forget about them in the refrigerator.

Andrea Pinabell, President, Southface InstituteAndrea Pinabell
President, Southface Institute

In addition to promoting sustainable homes, workplaces and communities with Southface, Andrea holds a chemical engineering degree from Iowa State University and has over 25 years of sustainable business and operations expertise with organizations like Starwood Hotels & Resorts and  The Home Depot Foundation.

241 Pine Street NE, Atlanta, Georgia 30308

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