It's Easy Building Green

By Moss, Doug | E Magazine, January-February 2007 | Go to article overview
Save to active project

It's Easy Building Green


Moss, Doug, E Magazine


We expanded and modernized our house 10 years ago, adding an entire second floor after having a couple of kids and reluctantly concluding we needed more space. We looked at moving but ultimately concluded we didn't want to leave our waterside, dead-end-street neighborhood that was safe for kids and cats alike.

In remodeling we wanted to do the right thing: We bought all energy-efficient and water-conserving appliances for kitchen and laundry. We installed a stove and range that also economize on energy, and kitchen cabinets made from sustainable wood. We even put recycled glass tile on the wall behind the stove counter and a reclaimed wood cutting board counter next to it.

We hung drapes made from hemp and bought some new green-friendly furniture. That included sofas made from recycled soda bottles, deck chairs made of old milk cartons, and chairs made with removable, washable and replaceable slipcovers.

We also installed wood floors made from reclaimed pallets, retrofitted much of the house with compact fluorescent bulbs, and installed skylights to minimize daytime lighting needs. And throughout the house we used non-toxic, water-based paints.

Though it was only a decade ago, none of this was easy to do at a time when many of the sources available were either overseas firms or nascent American companies struggling to survive. Our kitchen cabinets came from Germany and the dishwasher was Swedish. The company that provided the reclaimed pallets sold us the last of its stock and then went belly-up. And the maker of the soda pop bottle-upholstered couches didn't stay in business for long, either.

I regret that we didn't incorporate even more green features into our redesign. We could have gone solar with rooftop photovoltaic collectors to heat our water, or chosen an on-demand, tankless heater to replace the dinosaur we took out.

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
Loading One moment ...
Project items
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited article

It's Easy Building Green
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

While we understand printed pages are helpful to our users, this limitation is necessary to help protect our publishers' copyrighted material and prevent its unlawful distribution. We are sorry for any inconvenience.
Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.

Are you sure you want to delete this highlight?