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WHY BUY LOCAL AND HEALTHY?

Americans spend almost 90% of their lives indoors. We may think about buying nontoxic cleaning materials or personal care products, but how often do we think about components of our house or apartment? BuildingClean.org is a free tool that was created to help both consumers and building professionals identify building products such as insulation, sealants, windows/doors, paints, and flooring that may contain dangerous chemicals, and help them find healthier alternatives.

American-made, healthy products can help you capture the benefits of energy efficiency retrofits—including lower utility bills, improved tenant health, and increased economic development. Potentially harmful chemicals are often embedded in certain housing products commonly used during energy-efficiency updates and retrofits. Buy Local, Buy Healthy is a resource to help navigate those potential dangers and find new products to use in your projects that are local, safer, and healthier.

1 in 12 People in the United States has asthma.

42% Black people and American Indian/Alaska Natives have higher asthma rates than average. Black people are 42 percent more likely than whites to have asthma.

63% When “breathe easy” homes are built to eliminate pollutants—including using building products without harmful toxic chemicals—asthmatic children had 63 percent more symptom-free days.

Studies have repeatedly linked indoor residential chemical emissions with respiratory health issues such as asthma in children. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) one in 12 people or 8% of the U.S. population suffers from asthma, often triggered by residential sources such as volatile organic compounds (VOCs) found in paints, and formaldehyde found in insulation. When “breathe easy” homes are built to eliminate pollutants—including using building products without harmful toxic chemicals—asthmatic children had 63 percent more symptom-free days.

Chemicals found in building products can also cause cancer, lead to reproductive issues, and disrupt hormones critical for growing children, among many other health impacts. The Harmful Chemicals section of the BuildingClean.org outlines hazards by sector and provides lists of products that contain toxins. This section is designed to help you to make healthy choices and evaluate products. The key is transparency: knowing what is in the product is half the battle.

It is difficult to determine what harmful chemicals exist in a product, even with voluntary disclosures and health certifications that require the manufacturer to provide these details. Buildingclean.org provides summaries of the certifications, and transparency documents available, and hosts a certified product search that allows you to search for products that have these certifications and transparencies.

You will be able to find clean products in the following sectors: compact fluorescent light bulbs (CFLs), flooring, insulation, paint and wallcoverings, sealants, water filtration systems, and windows, doors, and skylights.

Toxic chemicals in products also impact the health of the contractors or people who install or apply the products in the home. The Chemical Library section on the website includes details about short-term effects of exposure to these chemicals like skin, eye, and respiratory irritation, as well as the longer-term effects.

A new report released today by BuildingClean.org found increasing the rate of residential deep retrofits across the nation coupled with the implementation of Buy American procurement policies could create more than 170,000 American manufacturing jobs.

BuildingClean.org Report Finds “Buy American” Policies Would Dramatically Boost Manufacturing Jobs Making Energy-Efficient Products

Find Local, Healthy Energy-Efficient Building Products

Building Clean is your portal to BUY LOCAL and HEALTHY energy-efficient products.

Go to BuildingClean.org