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Choosing Where to Live

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Ensure access to clean municipal water source.

When moving, building, renting or purchasing a home, consider the following factors that affect your health

Site

  • Ensure access to clean municipal water sources.
  • Avoid traffic congestion (noise and air pollution), radon, valleys with stagnant air, sources of EMFs, industrial areas.
  • Look for open, ventilated lots with good access to light and sunshine.

Building Materials

  • Paint, carpeting, glue, wallpaper paste, wood preservatives and other common materials are made with health-threatening chemicals that may be colorless or odorless. Fortunately, natural and environmentally friendly building materials are available.
  • Avoid synthetic floor coverings and board products that have chemical emissions. Also, avoid concrete if possible. It blocks the earth's natural electromagnetic frequencies, causing health problems. Choose linoleum, which is made from flax seed oil.
  • Avoid wall-to-wall carpet it traps dust, is difficult to clean, and the underlay and backing are usually synthetic. Natural wool area rugs with jute underlay are now available.
  • Incorporate tile, brick, stone, sustainable hardwoods, glass, metal, ceramic, natural fabrics, non-toxic finishes, solvent-free caulking, adhesives and glues.
  • Birch and maple are the most acceptable woods for the environmentally hypersensitive.

Electrical Wiring

  • Wiring of a house can be done in ways that minimize electromagnetic field radiation. Consult an expert to help you.
  • Before moving into a neighborhood, test for harmful electromagnetic field radiation with a gauss meter, a device that measures magnetic fields in milliGauss.

Plumbing

  • Use copper pipes with flared joints.

Heating and Cooling

  • Use radiant systems which minimize the stirring of dust.

Air Quality

  • Always properly vent combustion sources for gas or oil appliances.
  • Use airtight fireplaces, and place air intakes away from the traffic side of a house.
  • Place the furnace in a sealed room.
  • Install a central vacuum.
  • Avoid attached garages.
  • Find out if the house has been treated with insecticides or other fumigations in the last five years. If so, research the chemicals used and find out how long they take to break down.

Light

  • Be sure there is natural and full-spectrum lighting.
  • Provide enough windows, skylights and sunpipes.

Chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) deplete our valuable atmospheric ozone layer when they escape from conventional refrigerators that have been discarded and damaged. Europeans are more advanced than North Americans in producing CFC-free refrigerators even when discarded, these refrigerators cannot leak CFCs. Europeans use a hydro-carbon refrigeration system called "Greenfreeze," which relies on ozone-safe butane or propane fuels.

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