Sustainability is important. Considering color, materials and finishes we use for our homes ASID provides a list of guidelines to follow for sustainable practices :
- Utilize the REGREEN guidelines for best practice strategies http://www.regreenprogram.org
- Make a more ecologically sound choice of wood from a supplier who can verify through a chain of custody that the original trees came from an ecologically sustainable forest managed under guidelines of the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC).
- Specify “green” paint and other finishing materials that have documented levels of volatile organic compounds (VOCs), or chemical emitting materials, that are the lowest levels possible, and the rate of their emissions — or dissipation — is as fast as possible.
- Specify products free of urea formaldehyde, a known carcinogen.
- Specify sustainable fabrics that support the use of materials from rapidly renewable, post-consumer or post-industrial sources.
- Use rapidly renewable flooring products such as bamboo or linoleum to help reduce the amount of land and resources dedicated to producing construction materials.
- Specify energy-efficient appliances such as dishwashers and refrigerators with the EnergyStar™ rating.
- Work with contractors who use the LEED™ for Homes rating system.
- Design around standard product sizes to reduce material waste.
- Consider the recyclability of all materials used to redirect their “next life” away from landfills.
- Some products once referred to as “natural” are now known to have toxic qualities. For instance, pesticides are used to grow cotton and some wool is cleaned with dangerous chemicals during processing. With the help of new government labeling requirements, better tools and information about these products are becoming more available as well as a new vocabulary that can be useful to investigate materials and products for interior projects.