It’s difficult to determine the eco-friendliness of any household material, both for construction and in home decor items. Kitchen worktops in many ways cover both areas and have some inherent qualities that make them “green”.
Stone, like marble, granite and quartz, is seen as eco-friendly as it is a natural material. But then so is wood, so does that make wood equally or more green when it comes to environmental impact?
Here are a couple of points to help inform your choice of eco-friendly worktops.
Air quality is affected by your material – quartz is best
The Green Guard certificate helps suppliers and buyers to identify materials that have low chemical emissions, thus improving air quality where they are used. They approve quartz, over other stone materials for worktops, as they do not release harmful gas. Add to that the benefits of durability and look with this non-porous worktop and its clearly one of the best options.
When Green Guard talks about natural gas, it means elements such as radon which are emitted from the soil. Natural stone, soil and normal household items all release it. However, the levels are so low, even in materials like granite, that you needn’t be concerned. Common items containing radon include televisions, brazil nuts and bananas.
But negligible gas releases isn’t what makes granite, quartz and similar materials green.
Long lasting granite creates less unrecycled waste
Choosing granite worktops for your home is a great way to save money in the long term. The investment in a long lasting material means you replace your worktops less often. However, this is not necessarily the green advantage of granite. Rather because you aren’t replacing your counters every few years, as you would have to with laminate – which is difficult to recycle – you are helping reduce waste.
One of the most problematic elements of renovation and home construction with being green is that waste and excess used materials are often dumped. This can be avoided if you find a reliable clearance company who disposes of these materials in a green or gets them to the best place for reuse.
Surprisingly, not many buyers consider the long term impact of their selection of kitchen worktops. While granite and quartz may not be the ideal green solution, they do have the benefit of reducing waste and therefore play a part in making your home eco-friendly.