[ri-noo-uhl, -nyoo-]  Show IPA noun

1. the act of renewing.

2. the state of being renewed.

3. an instance of this.

Renewing the atmosphere does not just start and end with changing how we mow our lawns. Remember lawn mowing only contributes to 5-10% of our air pollution. The rest of our air pollution comes from a variety of sources both natural and man-made, but mostly man-made.

Natural processes that affect air quality include volcanoes, wildfires, animals, and pine trees. Volcanoes produce sulfur, chlorine, and ash particulates. Wildfires produce smoke and carbon monoxide. Animals emit methane as part of their digestive process while pine trees even emit volatile organic compounds (VOCs).

Unfortunately, according to the EPA most air toxics originate from human-made sources, including mobile sources (e.g., cars, trucks, buses) and stationary sources (e.g., factories, refineries, power plants), as well as indoor sources (e.g., some building materials and cleaning solvents). These produce nitrogen oxides, VOCs, carbon monoxide, carbon dioxide, sulfur dioxide, and particulates.

With that said look to make changes to other areas in your life that can improve the air quality. One way could be how you travel. Instead of driving solo to work everyday carpool with some co-workers. If giving up a car is unreasonable look to upgrade your car to a Prius or if you have the means a Tesla. Another way to make change could be where you are getting your energy from. Instead of using conventional sources look to upgrade to solar or wind energy. Companies such as Solar City and Clean Currents help provide these alternatives to homeowners.  Finally, it could be what you use inside your home. Next time you are remodeling or using cleaning solvents look to the U.S. Green Building Council’s Green Home Guide for building materials and cleaning solvents to use.

In the end there are many causes of air pollution, but there are also many ways to change that. Start with your lawn service’s 5-10% of air pollution and slowly work your way up from there. Contact us if you’re ready to take the A.I.R. Dare and renew the atmosphere!