Reducing Indoor Air Pollution
Air pollution is a fact of life in the 21st century. Reducing our use of pollutants will improve the environment and the health of those who live on our planet. But what about indoor air pollutants? The air quality inside your home affects you too, especially since most people spend more time indoors than outdoors.
Indoor air pollutants include elemental particles and gases produced by wood smoke and propane gas ranges. Some building materials, home furnishings and cleaning products emit toxic organic chemicals like formaldehyde that can contribute to poor indoor air quality. Outdoor pollutants such as radon gas from the soil under your home, carbon monoxide and nitrogen dioxide from the vehicles that drive by or pesticides from your neighbor's orchard can also seep inside your house.
How can you reduce the risk of negative health effects from indoor air pollution? First, check the contents of the household products you use, and always open the windows if there are warnings about fumes. You can buy a relatively inexpensive detector for indoor toxic emissions at your local hardware store. If air exchange is poor inside your home, consider installing a mechanical ventilation system that will maintain a healthy flow of air and filter out pollutants.
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At the Winter Palace and Hermitage in St. Petersburg, Russia, visitors would have to walk 15 miles to see the 322 galleries which house almost 3 million works of art.
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