Here are some excerpts from The Boston Globe's list; from lighting to countertops to compost bins, local designers lay out the elements for a green and health-conscious space. To view the full article, click here.Green kitchen design has come a long way in a short time. Only a few years ago, when “green” was at its buzzword peak, using sustainable materials here and there satisfied many homeowners. A truly green kitchen, however, features careful holistic design that enables a healthy family lifestyle along with saving energy and the planet. Nontoxic materials and finishes are of utmost importance. And they’re no longer novel. “Formaldehyde-free, low-VOC materials are common these days,” says Stephanie Horowitz, architect and managing director of ZeroEnergy Design in Boston. They are what consumers should demand, “especially in the kitchen, where families spend so much time and where the surfaces of countertops and cabinets really shouldn’t off-gas or leach.” She adds, “People expect green design — or should expect it.” To help you get there, here are 25 ideas, tips, and product picks from local kitchen designers.2. Make it AgelessRipping out one green kitchen and putting in another one every few years is a waste of energy and resources. “To be truly green, a kitchen not only has to have energy-efficient appliances and planet-friendly features, it must be designed to withstand the test of time,” says Lisa K. Tharp, founder of Boston’s K. Tharp Design and designer of the Concord Green Healthy Home, a showcase for sustainable design principles.3. Ask Questions, Lots of QuestionsIf you decide to enlist a designer’s help, make sure that person truly gets your needs and what it means to be green. Tharp says a kitchen designer should be able to answer the following questions: “What is your process to deeply understand and distill my wants and needs into a successful kitchen design? How will you ensure that the design honors the architecture of my home and is timeless enough to last? What are fundamental design principles that you incorporate into your kitchen projects? In your experience, what palette of materials, finishes, and products are proven to deliver a healthy and sustainable space? How will you avoid fads that do not hold up?”15. Shop LocalEven the greenest materials require a lot of fuel to ship across the country (or around the world). “I like to use new green materials but like to pair them with handmade and local materials,” Herrmann says. Not only does this save energy and resources, but those products also “tend to be better loved, and may be less likely to be discarded in a few years.”23. Choose Top CountersWhen it comes to quartz counters, Green prefers Cambria: The stone is primarily mined in North America, Cambria recycles all of the water in its fabrication facilities, and scrap material is collected for use as road base. One of Taylor’s favorites is Richlite, made from a paper-based composite material that is quite durable, heat-resistant up to 350 degrees, and impact-resistant. “It’s extremely strong, so you can have long cantilever overhangs without adding support brackets or steel,” Taylor explains. “It is easy to cut with a variety of tools, but it can also be threaded, so it’s easy to work with. The company uses only sustainably derived resources, like FSC-certified paper pulp, and low-emitting binders, the resins that hold the pulp together.”

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