Mon December 9, 2013
Earth Calendar for December 9th and December 10th
Americans spend up to 90 percent of their time inside. During winter storms, many people warm up with gas heating equipment or fires in fireplaces and wood-burning stoves.
While it is extremely important to stay warm, indoor air pollution levels can rise significantly during winter storm events, when homes are closed up and ventilation may be poor. Major pollutants released by gas heating and wood-burning include small particles, which can irritate airways and lung tissue; nitrogen oxide, which can irritate eyes, nose, and throat; and carbon monoxide, a potentially deadly odorless, colorless gas. Poor indoor air quality can be especially troublesome for individuals with heart or lung diseases, including asthma. Prevent pollutants from building up in one room by keeping doors open to other rooms, making sure air can circulate throughout your home. If you are building a fire, be sure that the fireplace damper is open – smoke inside your home is a signal that your fireplace or stove is not working correctly. Never use gas ranges, ovens, or clothes dryers, charcoal grills, or other un-vented fuel-burning appliances to heat your home. Do not run a portable generator in an enclosed or partially-enclosed space. These items can result in dangerous levels of carbon monoxide gas in your home.
On Our Calendar: If you are considering updating your holiday lights, don't toss out your old ones. Consider donating your used (but still working) holiday lights, or rope lights to Imago. They use the lights to light up the entrance trail in the winter, when the night falls early. Find out more about how to donate your holiday lights at the website.