The average American individual uses over 150 gallons of water each day. The average African family uses about 5 gallons of water each day. That’s a significant difference. Here in the U.S., our drinking water often goes to watering lawns and flushing toilets. We really don’t know what it’s like to have to conserve our drinking water resources.
However, the United Nations estimates that over 600 million people throughout the world live without access to safe drinking water. And the problem is expected to continue. By 2050, the world’s population is expected to reach 10 billion. With growing concerns about water shortages, conservation is critical.
Many new technologies save money and natural resources, and enhance our quality of life. Alternative energy and low—flow fixtures, graywater recycling, water harvesting and other smart conservation practices can reduce the demand for water by 75 percent. We can also reduce our monthly expenses—all while accommodating our growing population and economy, and reducing impacts to public services and our natural resources.
Energy-efficient lighting and natural lighting creates a healthier living and working environment. Solar practices, such as daylighting, strategically place windows and skylights to capture sunlight. Sunlight is free—and it’s more aesthetically pleasing than bulbs. In fact, a recent study by The Pacific Gas and Electric Company found that students with the most daylight in their classrooms progressed 20 percent faster on math tests and 26 percent faster in reading. Where lighting is necessary, low-watt fluorescent bulbs and motion sensors that automatically operate lights can be used.
Energy Star® appliances and practices greatly reduce energy consumption. In most homes, the refrigerator is the single-biggest energy wasting kitchen appliance. Some refrigerators account for up to 20 percent of an electric bill. An Energy Star® refrigerator uses at least 15 percent less energy than the current federal standards, and 40 percent less energy than the other conventional models sold in 2001.
Electric hot water heaters can account for as much as 30 percent of a home’s electricity. A solar hot water heater can greatly reduce energy demand. By relying on clean solar energy, we reduce our energy bills and our impact on the environment.
Grady Pridgen properties feature low-flow fixtures that limit the flow of water. Low-flow toilets and showerheads and faucet aerators can make a significant difference in monthly water use. Low-flow features provide great showers and still save money.
Walls, floors and more
In many cases, the products that are designed to be environmentally friendly are also healthier. Traditionally, many paints used on the interior of homes emit toxic fumes. Green design?and Grady Pridgen properties—feature low- or zero-volatile organic compound (VOC) paints. The zero-VOC paints are better for the occupants and for those applying the paints, too. For people with allergies and sensitivities, environmentally- and people-friendly low-VOC paints make spaces attractive, enjoyable and healthy.
If the walls are good for us, it makes sense that the floors should be, too. By using flooring that comes from renewable sources (like cork and bamboo) or using manufactured flooring, such as Marmoleum, we add durability. Grady Pridgen, Inc. creates beautiful, functional and healthy environments.