Home of the Future

Southern Ontario Eco Home (BY:SYLVIA WROBEL)

EcoFabulous Home - Modular Sustainable Green Eco-friendly House in Canada

When planting trees and plants around your home, it is important to consider the climate and amount of precipitation around your home. This is why it is important to chose plants that are native to the area and plants that are eco friendly.


This home is located in Southern Ontario. It is located in a Deciduous forest biome/Boreal forest biome.


A few native trees around the home include:

-Black Maple Tree

-White Birch Tree

-Red Pine Tree


Native Flowers include:

-Yellow Iris

-Blue Vervain

-Square stemmed Monkey Flower


It is also important to have drought-tolerant plants that won't need much water to grow. These plants are very eco friendly. The garden will include drought resistant grass as well as other plants.


Drought-Tolerant Plants:

-Honey locust (shade tree that can withstand drier summers and a wide range of soil conditions).

-Sunflowers

-Rock Rose

-Red Valerian

Stay clear of pesticides and fertilizers. Compost is the best fertilizer (Non Synthetic). Don't use any synthetic or chemical pesticides/fertilizers. These are very bad for the environment because they can make their way into the soil and harm other plants/organisms.

Vegetable/ Fruit Garden

In my vegetable garden I would farm the right vegetables/fruits according to the growing season. Buying the right fruits and vegetables can be difficult. Be sure to buy food that is grown locally within Ontario as opposed to imported foods. These types of foods can be found at local farmers markets.


Examples of Fruits/Vegetables to grow:

-Apples

-Carrots

-Lettuce

-Strawberries

-Beans

-Radishes

-Tomatoes



Also be sure to have a few drought resistant Vegetables :

-Peppers

-Asparagus

Transportation

As my choice form of transportation I choose a Hybrid Car. These cars help reduce air pollution because they run on electricity. Another alternative is a bicycle.

Bicycles are excellent modes of transportation for near destinations. They provide great health benefits from the excercise, and benefits for the planet (no pollution).

As my backup mode of transportation I choose Public Transit. This has the same benefits for the environment as carpooling and is helpful for short distances.

Waste Management

1. Recycling

Recycling is important to be eco friendly. Always remember the 3 R's: Reduce, Reuse, Recycle.


Benefits of Recycling


  • -Reduces the amount of waste sent to landfills.
  • -Conserves natural resources such as wood, water, and other minerals.
  • -Prevents pollution by reducing the need to collect new raw materials
  • -Saves energy
  • -Reduces greenhouse gas emissions that contribute to global climate change
Importance and Benefits of Recycling - Waste Management
2. Composting

Composting helps reduce waste as well as control it in homes. It also help improve soil structure, increases nutrient content, uses less water when added to plants because fertile soil has better water retention.

Why Compost?

Sponsoring an Endangered Species

I chose to adopt the Polar bear at the Toronto Zoo. Polar Bears are naturally found in the Arctic in Northern Canada, Greenland, Norway and Russia. They are the worlds largest terrestrial carnivores. Because of climate change, the sea ice is melting making it harder for Polar Bears to find their prey. As their habitat shrinks, polar bears face a huge challenge of their survival. Polar Bears are now endangered and their population continues to shrink.

Toxic Chemicals around the House

Many chemicals we use on a daily basis are toxic to humans and pets. Examples of these chemicals are Paint, Air Freshener and Laundry Detergent.



LAUNDRY DETERGENT

Laundry Detergent contains Sodium Carbonate (Na₂CO₃). It's made up of 2 sodium atoms, 1 carbon atom and 3 oxygen atoms.

Sodium is found in the first group of the periodic table (alkali metals) and the third period. It is classified as a metal because it's highly reactive, shiny/silvery.

Electrical Energy

My house will be powered using Solar Power and Hydro- Electric Power. These types of energy are eco friendly and come from renewable sources.


Solar Power is converting sunlight into electricity using Solar Panels. Overall, solar energy is cheaper to produce than to use fossil fuels or other non renewable sources. Solar Energy is sustainable and reliable.

The second type of energy I will use to power my house is Hydro-Electric Energy. This power comes from the energy given off from falling water. This source of energy is very sustainable and inexpensive.

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Making the Home Energy Efficient

To make the home more energy efficient we need to prevent hot air from entering the house during the summer, and prevent warm air from escaping during winter months. To make this possible, the exterior walls, ceilings and basements must be well insulated.

We must also be sure to include double glazed windows to cut energy costs, insulate sound, and reduce the amount of heat that enters the house.


The home will follow LEED standards (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design). These standards will help reduce costs of upkeep of the home, and use resources responsibly and efficiently.

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Appliances

In homes, a lot of money is wasted when we use appliances that aren't energy efficient. The best types of appliances to have, are ones that have the Energy Star Label. This company ensures that the appliances are efficient. They design their products to help save energy and money.


In my home I will include energy efficient toilets, washing machines, shower heads, stoves, microwaves, fridges, faucets and freezers. Energy Star appliances use 10 to 50 percent less energy than standard appliances. They save energy, save money, and help reduce emissions of greenhouse gases and air pollutants.


Benefits of Energy Star Appliances:


  • Lower utility bills
  • Improved quality
  • Enhanced Performance (decreased operating noise)



Light bulbs are also very important. In my home, all the light bulbs will be LED (Light Emitting Diodes). These light bulbs reduce wasted energy because they don't give off heat energy. They also last longer than incandescent light bulbs, which makes the cost cheaper over time, and are more durable, so they won't break as easily if dropped.

Space Technology

In my home you can find a few pieces of technology that have been developed due to space exploration. Smoke Detectors and Solar Panels were developed due to space exploration.



In the 1970s, NASA and Honeywell Corp. Partnered. They created a device that would detect smoke and toxic gases in America's First Space Station (SkyLab).

This led to the introduction of inexpensive photoelectric detection devices in 1979, which go off when smoke blocks the light beam. Smoke detectors have been developed due to space exploration and have since then saved countless lives on Earth.


Solar technologies generate most of the power used during space missions. Solar power is so important that NASA spends a lot time and money to make solar panels much more efficient, lightweight and affordable. NASA has an entire division, called the Photovoltaic & Space Environments Branch, dedicated to solar power challenges.

References

Chandler, N. (n.d.). How has NASA improved solar energy?. In How Stuff Works. Retrieved January 15, 2015, from http://science.howstuffworks.com/innovation/nasa-inventions/nasa-improve-solar-energy.htm


Communicating the Benefits of Recycling. (2013, April). In U.S Environmental Protection Agency. Retrieved from http://www.epa.gov/osw/conserve/tools/localgov/benefits/


Drought Tolerant Plants. (2015). In Sheridan Nurseries . Retrieved from http://www.sheridannurseries.com/garden_tips/general_gardening/drought_tolerant_plants


Energy Savings at Home. (n.d.). In Energy Star. Retrieved from https://www.energystar.gov/campaign/home?s=mega


Key Characteristics of Laundry Detergent Ingredients. (2014, December 5). In U.S Environmental Protection Agency. Retrieved from http://www.epa.gov/dfe/pubs/laundry/techfact/keychar.htm


Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design. (n.d.). In Wikipedia. Retrieved January 15, 2015, from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Leadership_in_Energy_and_Environmental_Design


NASA Technologies Benefit Our Lives. (n.d.). In NASA. Retrieved from http://spinoff.nasa.gov/Spinoff2008/tech_benefits.html


Polar Bear. (n.d.). In Toronto Zoo. Retrieved from http://www.torontozoo.com/ExploretheZoo/AnimalDetails.asp?pg=354


Recycling Services for Home. (2015). In Waste Management . Retrieved from http://www.wm.com/thinkgreen/recycling-residential.jsp


Smith, J. (2007, October 8). Space Age inventions you probably use. In CNN. Retrieved from http://www.cnn.com/2007/LIVING/worklife/10/04/nasa.everyday/index.html?_s=PM:LIVING


The New House: A Model of Energy Efficiency. (2015). In SEED. Retrieved from http://www.planetseed.com/relatedarticle/new-house-model-energy-efficiency


Wastes - Resource Conservation - Reduce, Reuse, Recycle - Composting. (2014, June 27). In U.S Environmental Protection Agency. Retrieved from http://www.epa.gov/composting/benefits.htm