How to Create an Eco-Friendly Kitchen

One of the major concerns for many homeowners when renovating or building a kitchen is how to make it environmentally friendly. Along with creating a space that's stylish and functional, you want a kitchen that is energy efficient, free of toxic chemicals, and sustainable. Luckily, both manufacturers and kitchen designers have taken note of this trend, and there are now plenty of options on the market that will help you create an eco-friendly kitchen. Here are a few we offer at Divine Design Build.

Image via IceStone

  1. Green countertops. There are a number of varieties of countertops that fall under the "green" category. IceStone and Vetrazzo countertops, made with recycled glass, are popular alternatives to granite. Richlite countertops, made from 100% post-consumer recycled paper, are beautiful in lieu of engineered or laminate counters. There are other more unconventional choices, like concrete, that are also available for green spaces.
  2. Responsible cabinetry. Standard cabinetry has a number of strikes against it when it comes to the environment, including the fact that plywood used to build cabinetry is also often made with formaldehyde-containing adhesives, and varnishes and paints often contain high levels of VOCs. The solution is to opt for responsibly made cabinetry, like that made by Prevo. Prevo--offered by Divine Design Build--sources all of the its hardwoods from FSC-managed forests, its products meet strict formaldehyde off gassing standards, including those set by CARB, and they also offer low- and no-VOC finishes.
  3. LED Lighting. For maximum energy efficiency, LED lighting has become an extremely popular choice in the kitchen. And if you're concerned about the looks of an LED light versus a standard incandescent fixture, you'll be happy to learn that LED design has come a long way, and that LED light fixtures now come in a wide variety of styles.
  4. High efficiency and Energy Star appliances. Finally, all truly eco-friendly kitchens should incorporate high-efficiency or Energy Star appliances. You'll find energy efficient options for any appliance you'll be installing in your kitchen, from ranges and range hoods, to refrigerators and microwaves.