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  • It is estimated that about 30% of the air in a typical home comes from the crawlspace, a place often filled with pests, debris and moisture. 
  • Air Sealing: The EPA estimates that the average home can save up to 20% of heating and cooling costs (or up to 10% of total energy costs) by air sealing and adding high performing insulation.
  • Insulation: Good insulation could save 20 to 35 percent in heating and
    air conditioning costs
  • Duct Sealing: Did you know that the average home’s heating and cooling ducting system (which moves air to-and-from a forced air furnace, central air conditioner, or heat pump) are often big energy wasters. By sealing and properly insulating your home’s ducts, we can improve the efficiency of your heating and cooling system by 20 percent on average and help limit the amount of pollutants which are drawn in through the duct system from the attic and crawlspace.
  • Lighting can account for 10-15% of your total energy bills. Electronics and their chargers consume from 5-15% of the energy used in a typical home. and standby power/ phantom loads alone accounts for 5-10% of residential energy use
  • Buildings consume 48 percent of all energy in the U.S.—76 percent of all electricity—and are responsible for almost half of all GHG emissions
  • The built environment produces about 40 percent of landfill waste, and uses about 40 percent of virgin materials
  • Existing U.S. buildings total approximately 300 billion square feet; every year five billion square feet of new space is built while another five billion square feet is renovated
  • Electricity is responsible for 41 percent of U.S. energy-related carbon dioxide emissions.
  • Greenhouse gases are a byproduct of burning fossil fuels, and 30 to 40 percent of those emissions are from electricity.
  • At current trends, the global electric power sector will emit twice as much carbon dioxide in 2030 as it did in 2007.
  • Mold and mildew   Mold can enter your home through open doorways, windows, vents, and heating and air conditioning systems and crawlspaces.  Mold and mildew are found in places with moisture.   Long-term moisture can also damage the structural integrity of your home thus reducing durability. Mold is commonly under sinks, leaky roofs, windows and pipes. Mold can also grow in dust, paints, wallpaper, insulation, drywall, carpet, fabric, and upholstery. 
    Indoor mold growth can be prevented by controlling moisture indoors.  Cleaning up the mold is not the cure.  Mold will grow back if the water/moisture problem is not fixed.
  • Volatile organic compounds (VOCs)   A variety of chemicals that have long-term adverse health effects. VOCs create an unhealthy indoor environment that can be up to ten times more polluted than the outdoor air. There are thousands of products that contain these noxious chemicals.  The most prevalent VOC is formaldehyde which can be toxic, allergenic and carcinogenic. It is most commonly found in plywood, glues, drywall, carpeting, insulation, veneers, cabinets, furniture, paints, stains, pesticides and other household products.
  • Research by the Air Resources Board, the U.S. EPA and others has shown that indoor levels of some pollutants, such as formaldehyde, chloroform, and styrene, range from two to 50 times higher than outdoor level. 
  • Based on a review by the Institute of Medicine (IOM) of the National Academy of Sciences, dampness and mold in homes is associated with increases in several adverse health effects including upper respiratory symptoms, cough, wheeze, and asthma exacerbation. The available data were sufficient to suggest, but not confirm, that dampness and mold in houses were associated with increases in development of the disease of asthma. The IOM indicated that the specific agents, e.g., molds, bacteria, or organic chemicals, causing these health effects were uncertain and that insufficient scientific data were available to draw conclusions about the association of dampness and mold with several other health effects. Nevertheless, the IOM concluded that building dampness and mold represented a public health problem and that steps should be taken to reduce building dampness and mold, including various education efforts, reviews of buildings codes and contracts, and an exploration of financial incentives for reduced dampness. Since completion of the IOM review, two new related analyses were completed for this Scientific Findings Resource Bank. A quantitative statistical evaluation of the available scientific literature produced estimates and uncertainty bounds for the average magnitudes of increases in various respiratory health effects in homes with dampness and mold. Building dampness and mold were determined to be associated with 30% to 50% increases in a variety of respiratory and asthma-related health outcomes. The observed increases in these adverse health effects in damp or moldy homes were very unlikely to be the result of chance. The second analysis estimated the U.S.-wide public health impact of dampness and mold in houses, focusing on current asthma, defined as doctor-diagnosed asthma plus recent asthma symptoms, as the health outcome. The proportion of current U.S. asthma cases attributable to dampness and mold exposure was estimated to equal 21% with uncertainty bounds of 12-29%. Approximately 4.6 million cases of current asthma (range: 2.7-6.3 million) were estimated to be attributable to dampness and mold exposure in the home, of the 21.8 million people reported to have asthma in the U.S. The associated annual cost of current asthma attributable to dampness and mold in the U.S was estimated to be $3.5 billion (range: $2.1 - 4.8 billion).

 

 

 
 
 
 
 
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