A great number of today’s citizens are aware of ecological and environmental problems caused by pollution, such as smog and global warming. However, though we know about the effects of pollution and have taken steps to minimize this hazard, there is one important area often overlooked when trying to find cheap, simple pollution solutions. This area is the American home. While what we put into our homes and what we do in them contribute greatly to the annual U.S. household energy usage, the design of our homes plays a very important factor, since a poorly-constructed home will use more energy for maintenance, heating, and cooling than a home with an energy-efficient design. If we could reduce the amount of energy used by our homes, we can make a significant contribution to reducing pollution generated from excess energy use. This, as will be shown later, is not a difficult thing to do; there are many ways that we can make our homes more energy-efficient, and most of us naturally like to make improvements to our homes. One of these improvements could be on the design of our homes, since much of our country's energy and funds go toward supplying heat and electricity to homes that could be made more energy-efficient. From this, we see that the design and energy-efficiency of a home are two things that need a second look if we wish to improve environmental health and lead more comfortable, happier lives.
To get a better sense of how we should begin solving our pollution problems, we must first understand the reasons why we tend to produce them in the first place. There appears to be an underlying reason for why humans are naturally energy-inefficient, according to Allaby and Bunyard--perhaps we just ha...
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Insulation Fact Sheet. Assistant Secretary of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy, US Department of Energy. 7 Dec. 1999
McCarthy, John. Quotations (17-Sep-1999). 7 Dec. 1999 <http://www-formal.stanford.edu/jmc/progress/quotes.html>.
Motors and Maintenance: Enhancing Energy Efficiency. Mohammad H. Qayoumi. 30 Oct. 1999 <http://www.facilitiesnet.com/NS/NS3mh52.html>.
The Online Workshop: Energy-Efficient Construction Techniques. Yellow Mountain Institute.
1 Dec. 1999 <http://monticello.avenue.org/Community/Environ/YellowMtn/workshop/>.
ST-96-20R Estimates of Housing Units, Households, Households by Age of Householder, and Persons per Household: July 1, 1996. The U.S. Bureau of the Census. 30 Oct. 1999 <http://www.census.gov/population/estimates/housing/prhuhht1.txt>.
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