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Going green at home
Keep Liberty Beautiful
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HGTV Green Home Packed with Ideas

The Home and Garden Channel is one of my favorite pleasures on TV. Actually my husband thinks that out of the gazillion channels that we get that I watch little else besides HGTV, the Food Network, DIY, Fine Living and some of the Discovery channels. That may be close to true. It seems to me that the more channels that we have available, the less there is to watch. It is reminiscent of some lines in a song, “fifty channels and nothing to watch … ” Anyway, I do enjoy these channels. They have a wealth of information about home living. Increasingly, they have more and more information on ‘green living’— eco-friendly ideas for your home and now for building. This year HGTV sponsored a Green Home Giveaway for an ‘idea home’ they built in the Bluffton- Hilton Head area.
The home was given away in a drawing a week ago, but I got the chance to visit it beforehand. The coastal-design house is located in Tradition, a new development in the Bluffton area. The house is not only extremely attractive but it is full of simple ideas for conserving resources and reusing and re-purposing items for new tasks. The house also meets LEED building standards and uses a number of tools like solar panels to make it extremely energy efficient as well.  

For the flooring, eco-friendly hardwood that includes a core of recycled wood fibers, bamboo flooring, and 100 percent recyclable carpet with recycled content were used throughout the house. Lighting included options like energy efficient compact fluorescents. Synthetic drywall was used throughout the building process. The builders also incorporated a number of techniques, like double insulation, thicker flashing around windows, appropriately sized ducts, to increase energy efficiency and reduce humidity.  
The installation of programmable thermostats and the use of zone controls maximizes the heating and cooling of the home for the areas that are used most and for the times of the day when they are occupied.
Of course, the designer installed energy Star rated appliances in the home. Low VOC paints and sealants were also used in decorating the home. As I mentioned earlier, the designer also re-purposed a number of items for furnishings to conserve the use of new natural resources. The home is comfortable and attractive. The Green Home certainly proves that you can live comfortably in an attractive setting while reducing your footprint on the environment and conserving our resources.
The landscape designers used native and drought tolerant plants and a minimum of grass as they decorated the exterior of the home. A high efficiency irrigation system with a rain sensor maintains the landscape effectively. These techniques require less water and minimal fertilization in the care of the yard for the home. They also incorporated ‘pervious pavers’ in the sidewalk and patio areas so that rain water can flow through to the soil.
The development Tradition Hilton Head has a green ‘attitude’, too. They have incorporated environmental preservation areas and buffers as well as rain containment areas and a water re-use irrigation facility that will re-use non-potable water for watering landscaped areas.
Be sure to check out the website for more information and ideas that you can incorporate in your current home or your dream home you hope to build. Your dream home can be a green home with just a little effort.
Current Keep Liberty Beautiful projects that need your involvement:
Nominations for the Win-dex Business of the Quarter Awards are due by June 30. Help us recognize attractive businesses in our county. Call 368 4888 for information.
June 27 at 7a.m.: Whitewash Party for Seabrook School. Call Cindi at Seabrook Village for information.
May-Aug. 29: Cigarette Litter Prevention Project. Do you hate to see that nasty cigarette butts trashing our sidewalks and roadways? If so, then call to get involved in this awareness project to get those ‘butts’ off the street! Contact Keep Liberty Beautiful or the Hinesville Downtown Development Authority.
Liberty County: Home of the World’s Largest Crayon. Please help us make this Guinness Book of world Records project a reality by calling 368-4888 or e-mailing Or ask any Keep Liberty Beautiful council member about recycling used crayons. We need your help as we collect used crayons for recycling to create this giant crayon this fall.

Swida is the director of Keep Liberty County Beautiful. She can be reached at 368-4888 or
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