10 Tips to Keep Your Kids Safe from Asbestos

danger asbestos

Asbestos is a naturally occurring mineral found on the Earth’s crust. It has many excellent properties such as chemical resistance, heat insulation, and strength. These properties make asbestos widely used in the construction industry particularly during 1940 to 1970. Nowadays, many people think that the health hazards linked to asbestos are no longer a concern. But it’s important to understand that asbestos can still be legally used today. Highlighted in this article is vital information about asbestos. It also discusses important tips on how to ensure your children are safe from this substance at home.

Importance of Asbestos Testing

The reasons why you should test your home for asbestos are very crucial as mention in this article as it involves health and safety.  This natural fibre poses a serious health risk to both children and adults. What’s important to keep in mind is that asbestos doesn’t cause any harm unless it deteriorates. The moment it becomes crumbly, microscopic asbestos fibres are released in the air. Inhaling these fibres can cause different life-threatening diseases. These may include pulmonary fibrosis and a rare kind of cancer called Mesothelioma.

Keeping Your Children Safe from Asbestos

Inspect for asbestos

In general, you have less to worry about if your home is newly constructed. But it’s still highly recommended to have your home inspected. When it comes to asbestos testing, Melbourne has plenty of experts that can help determine whether there are materials in your home containing asbestos. You can consult local and state health departments as well as EPA offices. They can provide a list of laboratories or individuals that can analyse a home for the presence of asbestos fibres.

Keep an eye out on children’s toys

There are also recent reports about crayons and children’s toys containing asbestos fibres. It’s a prudent move to stay updated about such reports and stay away from brands that use asbestos in their products. These things might seem inconspicuous, but they could very well lead to your kids suffering from serious illnesses.

Limit entry of your kids

Upon having your home inspected for asbestos, you should limit entry of your kids and explain to them why they couldn’t enter the area. This would eliminate their curiosity and minimise the chances of them entering the sealed room. Be sure that the room is sealed properly. There should be no peek holes so your kids wouldn’t accidentally inhale asbestos.

Put remodelling and repairs on hold

Are you planning a remodelling project? Perhaps it’s best to put your plans aside until the asbestos-containing materials have been properly removed from your home. Even if the area that you plan to remodel doesn’t contain any materials with asbestos, you risk damaging those that contain asbestos. Contact licensed experts and have these materials removed first immediately.

DIY is possible but very risky

You can remove asbestos on your own. However, if you choose to go this route, it’s recommended to educate yourself regarding best practices. What you’re about to do entails a lot of risks. This is why it’s often recommended to leave this task at the hands of qualified professionals.

Check locations in your home regularly

Among the things you should learn are the areas of your home where you might find asbestos. From this article it is clearly states how properly handle asbestos testing and removal at each houses. Keep in mind to regularly check locations in your home where asbestos might be present. Since this natural fibre is used for its tensile strength and resistance to heat, it most commonly used in building materials. Be sure to check insulation around pipes and furnaces as well as insulation in walls and ceilings. Other locations include:

  • Roofing shingles;
  • Floor tiles;
  • Old appliances;
  • Texturised paints; and
  • Soundproofing materials

Check consumer products

If you have a lot of old appliances still in use at home, you should check the product label or the invoice. Get the model number and the year of manufacture of the product. You can then use this information to ask the manufacturer regarding the presence of asbestos in the appliances.

Materials in good condition must be left untouched

As mentioned earlier, asbestos only becomes a risk when it deteriorates. There’s no reason to mess with an asbestos-containing material in your home if it’s still in excellent condition. As the old adage goes, “If it isn’t broke, don’t fix it.”

Be proactive

Remember that your home isn’t the only place where you can find asbestos. Old school buildings are also common carriers. So be sure to talk to the school administrators and ask whether they have already taken the necessary precautions regarding asbestos removal.

Look for accredited and certified contractors

Handling asbestos is an extremely risky endeavour. It’s recommended to seek the help of accredited and certified contractors. Be sure that the contractors have been certified by the EPA or a state-approved training school. I highly recommend looking for asbestos testing Melbourne experts, but don’t forget to ask the contractor for an up-to-date proof of certification like this accreditation and membership from accredited company.

The Advantage of a Solar-Powered Home

solar energy savings

Solar powered homes can help save on utility bills and protect the environment. In fact, the sun’s energy can supply a year of power for the entire population.

Continue reading to find the advantages of solar power.

 

Money Saving Benefits

Did you know that installing a solar grid could save you thousands of dollars each year? In fact, you will begin saving money as soon as your solar power system is installed.

With the many tax incentives offered, it is a secure investment with low payback terms. The money you save on your heating and cooling bills will more than pay for your initial investment.

Installing solar panels on your home not only saves you money on your electrical bills, but it also increases the value of your home. There are many homebuyers who want to lower their carbon footprint to help protect the environment. Should you decide to sell your house, the environmental savvy people will be looking for a house just like yours.

 

Reliable Energy

Everyone knows that the sun will rise every morning and set every evening. For this reason, solar power is a very reliable energy source. Because no one can own the sun or prevent it from shining, solar power provides you security and independence. Once your solar panels are installed, you will have access to free energy.

 

Almost Maintenance Free

Very little work must be done to keep your solar power system working. In fact, most people find that maintenance only needs to be performed once a year to keep the grids in working order. The most common maintenance chores include ensuring no limbs are hanging over the solar panels and the solar panels are free from debris.

 

It is Virtually Silent

Many homeowners who have solar panels comment on how quiet the system is. Absolutely no noise is emitted from the photovoltaic panels as they convert sunlight into electricity.

 

You Can Earn Money!

One of the biggest advantages of installing solar panels and tying it into your electric company’s grid is the ability to sell unused power back to the electric company. These savings can come in the form of a check or a credit for, which can be used for the electricity that you may consume in the future.

 

Technologies are Changing

In the past, the cost of installing solar-powered systems was so expensive an average homeowner could not afford one. Thankfully, with the newest technological advances, the price of a solar power system has dropped dramatically. In fact, with the tax credits offered on both the federal and state level, the costs of a system can be diminished by as much as 50%.

If you have been thinking about converting to solar power for your home, now is the time. The cost of installing the system, the amount of money you will be saving each month on your utility bills and the positive impact it can have on the environment should convince you to install a solar power system on your home.

The Financial Cost of Solar Panels

installing solar panel

Solar panels are widely recognised as a money saving, environmentally friendly alternative energy source. The use of solar panels and solar energy is becoming increasingly common for both commercial and residential properties. This is largely due to the fact that solar energy reduces the expenses related to traditional electricity and utility bills.

Even though these savings are noteworthy, some people are wary of the cost of solar panels. This is because the panels and the installation process are a considerable investment. Understanding the benefits of this financial investment is important, and breaking down the costs is equally important.

 

The Size of the Area

Naturally, there is direct cost associated with purchasing the panels themselves. The cost of the solar panels will vary according to a number of different factors such as the size of a building. For example, a large commercial property may need more solar panels than a small residential home. Panels vary in size depending on the retailer. It is best to research the different sizes to see which ones are most suitable. In many cases, solar panel companies can provide estimates on how many panels and what size will be needed. Some companies even offer free consultations or evaluations to make these determinations.

 

The Cost of Installation

The cost of installation is another expense related to solar panel usage. It is important to note that virtually any utility source will have expenses related to installation. This means that installation fees are very common and already expected. The cost of installation will vary depending on the company that provides the solar panels or the solar panel installation service. Again, estimates and consultations are often available by contacting the companies directly. Some solar panel providers may offer certain discounts or special offers regarding installation prices.

It is also important to note that there are often financing options available for solar panels and solar panel installation. Financing offers will depend on a number of different factors. The best way to obtain information on financing is to contact a solar panel provider directly.

In addition to this, some companies offer specials on system repairs, cleaning and other types of maintenance. These valuable offers can make solar panels even more worthwhile and cost effective. While there is indeed an initial investment when getting solar panels, the cost pays off over time. Considering these factors makes it clear that the cost can be well worth it.

6 Ways Schools Can Implement Natural Resources Conservation

Recycle

As humanity continues to consume earth’s resources at an exponential rate, it is now up to students along with the school staff to come up with effective ways to conserve our planet’s natural resources.

The fact is, humanity is using up a year’s worth of supplies faster and faster. For instance, back in 1993 it fell on October 21 while in 2003 it fell on September 22 while in 2013 it fell on August 20. Clearly, the earth cannot keep up with the demands that humanity makes upon it and the resources of the earth are diminishing to dangerous levels. Only about a third of the resources of the earth remain.

Even though the previous paragraph paints a grim picture of what is happening, there is something that humanity can do and there are ways to conserve resources. The following are some of the things that students and the school staff can do regularly to help remedy the situation.

 

1. Close the Doors/Windows Every Time the Air Conditioning is On

In America today, air conditioning accounts to around 12% of the total annual energy consumption. If doors remain closed every time the air conditioning is on, there will be significant savings of energy since the cool air remains in the room. When the door or the windows are open, your air condition has to double its efforts to keep the humidity out for the room to cool down.

 

2. Use One Paper Towel When Drying Hands

It is good that students and the school staff know that paper towels come from trees. Every time you use an additional paper towel, you are promoting the cutting down of a tree somewhere. In addition, once students learn to use less paper towels, they’ll be able to influence their families and friends. Once a greater portion of the population observes this simple strategy, it will truly make a major contribution to the conservation of the environment.

 

3. Whenever Possible, Keep Only One Section of the Lights On

A single light bulb uses about 60 kilowatts of energy every hour. The average personal computer uses around 70 kilowatts in the same amount of time. If students turn all light bulbs on in all classrooms across the country, it is just the same as running hundreds of thousands of consumers simultaneously.

 

4. Throw Trash in the Trash Can

The academic quad and rally court is normally littered with snack packets and paper bags after lunch. If the trash is put in the trash bins, it will help not only help the janitorial staff, but also it will also lessen the presence of annoying birds that feed on leftovers or morsels and dirty the campuses every single day.

 

5. Reduce the Amount of Paper You Print

Even though School Loop has a feature for allowing students to turn in their homework electronically, few teachers ever take advantage of this paper saving option. If most schools or teachers would only implement this policy, the amount of paper saved could potentially protect hundreds of trees. Students should have the initiative to ask their teachers if they could submit their assignments electronically to help save the environment.

 

6. Switch to Non-Plastic Water Bottles

To make a year’s supply of water bottles, it takes 17 million barrels of oil. That is enough to power one million vehicles. Switching to non-disposable water bottles is a cheaper yet more eco-friendly alternative.
In conclusion, these are the six ways students can do to help conserve our natural resources. The strategies are quite easy to implement and if all students in the country were to do them, the difference it would make would be great. Always remember that environmental conservation is every human being’s responsibility, and that every action, no matter how small, counts.

The Long-Term Effects of Global Warming

Polar Bear

Global warming has become a trending topic with more and more activists driving intrigue towards this issue. Yet, there are many people and nations who are not paying enough attention to these problems because they are not aware of the long-term consequences that are going to surface because of neglect. Scientists and environmentalists are worried that this could become a major concern soon as we are starting to feel the effects of global warming already.

Let’s take a glance at the alarming long-term effects of global warming that the world is experiencing right now:

 

Rising Sea Levels

Experts say that this is going to be more and more evident by 2100. This is highly critical especially for the coming generations because this is not far away at all.

The rising sea levels is going to cause major problems around the world and it surely won’t be easy to deal with. But the question is, what has been causing this?

The sea levels rise because of the melting of icebergs due to the rising temperatures. This could have a devastating effect not only to us, humans, but also on the wildlife populations.

 

Fluctuating Weather Patterns

This can already be seen in many parts of the world where the temperatures seem to be rising and/or dipping to levels that have not been experienced before. This is quite important because weather patterns are a big part of the equation/

When the natural weather pattern is affected, there are areas that experience longer wet seasons and there are those that have to bear the effects of a warm weather way longer than usual. This could greatly affect the agriculture and cause various diseases brought about by the emergence of more parasites such as mosquitoes.

 

Oxygen Depletion

This is one of those global warming effects that many are not aware of or are not concerned about. But the thing is, our grandchildren and their children will be the ones suffering the most. The damage to the ocean is going to start to wreak havoc on oxygen levels over time and this is going cause more and bigger problems. Another damage that we have to be concerned about is the high incidence of heart and lung diseases because of depleted oxygen levels.

These are just a few of the long-term effects that have been cited by scientists around the world who have been monitoring the drastic changes of global warming. It is important that we pay attention to this issue before it goes out of control.

Though there are quite a lot of organisations and movements around the world that have been focused on solving this issue, there are still people who do not see global warming as something alarming. The importance of collaborative efforts should be emphasised here, as change will be easier to achieve if everyone will do his/her part.

Finding Out All About Science as You Progress Through Education

When you want to learn all about science, you really want to pick a certain branch. Perhaps you’re fascinated with the stars and planets and want to study astronomy, or maybe you love animals and are into biology, or one of its many individual sciences like zoology or marine biology.

Science is fascinating as a whole, and that doesn’t mean you can’t study it as a whole. However, focusing on one branch is what dedicated scientists to discover new information as they learn all about science and continue their education on the graduate level. Science can then be a career for them as there are many growing careers in the field of science.

The Field of Medicine

The field of medicine is a science, and it is always in the forecast that certain jobs in the healthcare profession are going to be growing. These types of jobs pay well, too, as do many jobs in the world of science.

Math and Science

Certain core subjects link together well, and that is what happens with science and math. It’s interesting too because not only do the subjects intertwine often in studies and with careers, but people that like science often like math and vice versa. Science finds its way into math, but it’s math more often that always finds its way into science.

The Science Fair

One science tradition that still rings true today with students is the Science Fair. The Science Fair was always fun for me, and when I became a teacher later, I got to see the kids become excited about it.

I couldn’t believe the projects kids nowadays would come up with compared to what I used to see as a kid. The first science project I did, however, was pretty cool because it was all about the inner workings of a battery. We actually made a battery for the exhibit with a volt tester to read the voltage.

Whether you plan on a career in one of the sciences or not, everyone has to study science to a degree. High school was when I started paying more attention to science and enjoying it, but I’ll never forget my freshman science teacher, whom I knew from church, who would leave us with a substitute to have us watch Fantasia and later on ask us write about evolution.

I did not like that at all, and I complained to the principal or with another fellow student. But, that was just a belief of mine that clashed with science. Science is a lot of fun, and in many cases fascinating.

One thing that makes me appreciate science even more is the fact that right now, I live near the ocean. I had never been to the ocean until I moved here, and now I like studying  the science of nature. I just caught my first hermit crab the other day, and I have over 50 shark teeth and tons of shells. It’s fun watching the dolphins and the seagulls, too. Science is all around us, and it is fun seeing new things.

A Look at Science Education and Its Different Branches

When I was a kid, I didn’t think much about science education. It seemed to go against my spiritual beliefs, but you have to know the rest of the story. You see, I am a Christian, and I studied in a private school until the 4th grade. Upon entering public school, I just didn’t like hearing about things like evolution. Furthermore, certain parts of science seemed to bore me.

It wasn’t until high school that I started enjoying science education a little more. I realized that many aspects of science were of course happening out there in nature, and that didn’t mean I had to believe everything science had to say. And, I also realized that the aspects of science that I believed in went along with my faith about creation.

Marine Biology

Subsequently, I really began to enjoy studying marine biology in high school. At first, I was just mesmerized by the beauty of the fish in the tank but later on, I started to like the idea of learning about them and how to take care of them. We always had to take turns cleaning the tank.

Geology

Switch to college, and my first science experience there was quite nice, too. I was studying Geology, and that is something I took with me all the way up to today. I have a collection of rocks that I have always kept growing. But my favorite type of rock is obsidian; I have two pieces of rainbow obsidian that I really like.

Biology

However, while I like Biology, my experiences with Biology in college were rather boring. There were certain parts of Biology that captured my interest, like when you’re studying larger animals and such. But, when I had to study about bacteria, protozoa, flagella, and things like that, I started to lose interest quickly.

Technological innovation and space exploration come from the field of science. I didn’t like Chemistry and physics that much. I did enjoy learning about the elements though, but that was the rest of it; I found formulas and other related stuff boring and difficult.

Science as a whole has a lot to offer, and although I took a lot of science classes, I still feel as though I only tapped a small part of it. The reason being is that I’m more of the artistic type and my path was focused on English and History. But science education, nonetheless, is just as important for sure and can be quite helpful in many different fields.

With my experiences, I felt like maybe kids don’t get as much of a science education until they choose that path with their undergraduate and graduate studies. That was just due to not studying science until the 4th grade and playing catch up. But, it really just might be true.

Do you really tap into the heart of any of the subjects until you study them in college? That is why, in the future, there is a plan to redirect education to gear it less towards all those core subjects and mold the curriculum based on the student’s interests and needs.

Pros and Cons of Solar Energy

The advantages of solar energy are constantly touted by environmentalists. While what they are saying does have merit, solar energy does have its pro and cons.

Benefits of Solar Over Oil Energy

Before homeowners choose one energy option over another, they must first understand how they work. Oil is a limited resource. Eventually, there will be a time when there is not enough oil to satisfy consumer demand. This will leave people who are reliant on oil energy in a difficult position.

Solar energy is a renewable resource. When users cannot make use of the sun’s power at night or on cloudy days, homeowners can rely on the sun coming out the next day. This makes solar energy a constant and reliable power source.

When solar energy is being harnessed, no sound is made. The large machines used for oil energy make a lot of noise. This makes them impractical.

One of the main reasons that there is so much buzz about solar energy is that it does not contribute to the pollution. This fact makes solar power more practical and desirable than oil energy. When people burn oil, it releases a number of harmful chemicals into the air. Some of these are greenhouse gasses, carbon dioxide, and carcinogens.

Homeowners will be pleased to know that there is little or no maintenance required to keep solar cells running. As there are no moving parts in the cell, it is almost impossible to damage them. Solar cells last a very long time and most homeowners will only need to worry about cleaning them on an annual basis.

Negative Aspects of Using Solar Power:

  • Solar equipment can be expensive to purchase and install. The amount of money saved on future electricity bills will make solar panels worth it in the long run.
  • Solar energy cannot be harnessed in poor conditions such as during a storm, when it is raining, on cloudy days and at night.

The advantages of solar energy outweigh the drawbacks. This, combined with the fact oil will not be around forever, makes looking into solar energy worthwhile.

If you are unsure of whether solar energy is the right choice for your family, speak to a company that installs solar panels. The staff will be happy to help you with your questions.

As you do not have the skills to install your panels, it is recommended to hire a professional for installation. The cost of buying and installing panels is what deters most people from making their home solar capable.

People who have this mode of thinking should be aware that solar energy does not cost any money. The more they use their panels, the less money they will pay to their power company.

As people need power throughout their lifetime, these savings will add up. In ten years, homeowners will be thrilled that they chose to get solar panels installed in their home.

 

What are the Main Types of Renewable Energy?

Our civilization relies upon a constant supply of energy in order to function. Should this supply be cut off, our society would quickly descend into anarchy. Even minor interruptions in the flow of power can be very difficult to deal with as anyone who has experienced a blackout can attest.

The world is filled with energy, fortunately, and this supply takes many different forms. Broadly speaking; however, it is divided into two main categories. Energy can either be renewable or non-renewable. While much of modern civilization has been constructed using non-renewable energy sources, there has been an increasing move towards the use of renewable sources in the last few decades.

Non-Renewable Energy Sources

As the name suggests, a non-renewable energy source is one that has a finite supply. Once it has been used up, it is gone for good. The fossil fuels such as coal, oil, and natural gas that are used widely are all non-renewable resources. While there are still vast quantities remaining to be used, no new fossil fuels are being produced. Once the last lump of coal has been burned, that is the end.

Renewable Energy Sources

Renewable energy, on the other hand, relies upon sources that do renew themselves quickly enough to be sustainable. Making use of these sources of energy often involves tapping into various natural forces that constantly occur across the globe. The three main types of renewable energy involve using the wind, the sun, and the flow of water.

The wind is always blowing somewhere on the Earth and as long as the sun shines and the Earth rotates, it will never stop. By erecting wind turbines whose blades are turned by the flow of air, we can tap into this endless flow and use this energy to produce electricity. Windmills have been used for centuries to do useful work, but modern wind farms can harness far more of the power of the wind.

The flow of water has also been used for hundreds of years, but modern hydroelectric dams produce quite a lot of electricity. As the river flows downhill from its source, it is pulled by the force of gravity. By erecting a dam at a strategically-chosen position, this force can be used to generate electricity. As the water flows through the dam, it turns the blades of the turbines, producing electricity that can be used for many different purposes.

The final type of renewable energy is the most plentiful. Every second of every day, the sun pours an enormous quantity of energy out into space. By capturing some of this energy with solar cells, we can tap into this virtually inexhaustible source of power. Solar cells are becoming more and more efficient, meaning that we can use more and more of the sun’s energy.

It is inevitable that we will need to power our civilization with renewable sources of energy in the near future. By tapping into the power of the sun, we can run our society for many generations to come.

 

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We Should Be Aware of Global Warming

Global Warming has been affecting lives and should no longer be ignored. We should all be aware about it and ask what we can do to help.

  1. Read About What’s Going On

Scientists have figured out what is happening with our environment. Information abounds and you should learn about it.

When you read about global warming issues, you will find positive measures have been in place. This will lighten your helplessness when you know what you can do to help.

Since we all live on this earth, we should know what is going on. Learn about what is happening and where the problem areas might be. We should also know about what to expect in the next few years.

  1. What You Should Do

You can learn about:

  • How to recycle and its effect on the environment.
  • Driving an environmentally friendly car
  • How you can become a better citizen.
  1. Start Recycling

With recycling, you can make a difference, even if it is small. You can bring your recycling to a centre in your city. You could have it picked up, it depends on what they offer in your area.

If you do not have a recycling service near you, suggest to start one.

  1. Make Better Choices

Make better choices when it comes to your car. Not everyone can go out and buy a new car that is environmentally friendly. If you do get a chance, you should make that choice. It will help the environment as well as your budget.

At home, make sure the lights are off when you are not in a room. Unplug appliances that you don’t always use. Make better purchases when it comes to what you bring into your home.

  1. We Can All Work Together

Rally your neighbours and your city. Plan an event where people can come out to learn about global warming and what they can do to help. Figure out ways to get the word out. Sometimes all we need is a way to make a difference. If all of us work together, we can make a change. It will be worth your time if you helped save the environment.

Knowledge is power. We should use information about global warming, its effect, and what should be done, then pass it on. It will help save the world and make it a better place.