Most people are unaware of all the pollutants that exist in the indoor air environment – the glue used on rugs, the tint used in photo copying in the office. We should be equally concerned about the indoor environment as we are the outdoors.
Miami, FL (PRWEB) April 16, 2013
Houseplants do more than just look leafy and gorgeous, they also help clean the air. These leafy air filters remove indoor pollutants by absorbing them through microscopic openings in their leaves.
To help spread awareness of the dangers of indoor air pollution and educate consumers on the health benefits of having plants in the home and at work, Costa Farms launched their program “O2 for You: Houseplants with a Purpose.”
“Most people are unaware of all the pollutants that exist in the indoor air environment – the glue used on rugs, the tint used in photo copying in the office. We should be equally concerned about the indoor environment as we are the outdoors,” says Dr. Mike Merida, houseplant expert from Costa Farms.
How is indoor air polluted?
Studies by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) have found that the air indoors may be dramatically worse than the air outdoors. Commonly used home cleaning and improvement products can raise toxic Volatile Organic Compounds (VOC) levels in homes. “Concentrations of many VOCs are consistently higher indoors (up to ten times higher) than outdoors,” says the EPA.
Where do indoor air toxins come from?
There are a wide variety of common culprits:
- Formaldehyde is found in a variety of building materials in homes and offices. Formaldehyde is found in glue, particleboard, timber paneling, plywood, insulation, fiberboard and shelving, furniture, and cabinetry made with pressed wood. It can also be present in new carpeting and drapes.
- Toluene is a solvent found in paint, gasoline, kerosene, lacquers, nail polish, some cosmetics, stain removers, fabric dyes, inks, and adhesives.
- Xylene can be found in household products such as floor polish, aerosol paint, household cleaners, insecticides, paint, shoe polish, pens and markers, herbicides, sealants, and in particleboard.
- Ammonia is found in household products such as floor polish, window cleaners, drain cleaners, toilet cleaners, and oven cleaners as well as laundry and cleaning products.
- Benzene can be found in adhesives, cigarette lighter fluid, gasoline, solvents, kerosene, pesticides, glue, charcoal lighter fluid, degreasers, and insecticides.
- Carbon monoxide is an odorless gas that is caused by incomplete burning of fuels such as wood, charcoal, oil, kerosene, propane, and natural gas. Products or equipment with internal combustion engines such as generators, cars, lawn mowers, and power washers also produce CO.
Plants are silent air scrubbers
Plants not only beautify the surroundings, NASA research has proven scientifically that certain species of indoor plants can actually remove VOCs from the air.
Air Rx: A plant in every room
Strategic placement means plants can do their air-scrubbing job for every member of the family: place plants in bedrooms, baths, living room, den, and kitchen. While plants won’t remove all the toxins from the air, they are a beautiful and positive step in creating a healthier environment for the home.
Get Kids Involved
All through the month of April, kids and families can join together to make every day an Earth Day. Look for Costa Farms’ ‘O2 for You’ Plant Party houseplants in kid-friendly containers that come with Let’s Have a Party sticker books, ready for kids of all ages to personalize. Choose from over 10 varieties of Plant Party houseplants available at your nearest home improvement centers. From snake plants to ferns, these little green heroes will help bring a little green into the home to enjoy year round.
To learn more about the role of houseplants in maintaining clean air indoors, go to http://www.o2foryou.org/.