THE FUTURE OF BUILDING
The latest trend in building is Smart Homes.
Is the convenience of technology in built environments worth the risk of potential health issues?
Buildings are being powered up to be sustainable and efficient but are overloaded with technology. How much is too much?
SMART HOMES = SICK PEOPLE
Are the conveniences of technology worth the cost of potential health risks?
Imagine you have designed and built the perfect home for yourself or your clients. You have your project certified as LEED, WELL or LIVING BUILDING CHALLENGE incorporating biophilic design elements. YOU HAVE CHOSEN all the construction materials TO BE healthy AND use a low carbon footprint. No expense has been spared on the flooring, carpets, cabinets, plumbing, etc. The house is beautiful, energy efficient and healthy.
In addition, the house is set up as a smart home. Your doorbell is not only wireless, it can take video, and you can talk to it. You can play any music anywhere in the house with a voice command. Your sprinkler system knows when to go on and off in different places. Even your refrigerator knows how many eggs, how much milk and ice it has. The lights are controlled wirelessly and can even change colors or have them go on when your client isn’t home. The alarm system is wireless. You can even lock or unlock their front door from anywhere in the world using a smartphone. The 5G WiFi router allows instant internet access from anywhere in the home. Even their HVAC system knows when someone is home, turning itself off if no one is around to enjoy the heating or cooling.
Everything in your house can be pre-set or controlled using a smartphone.
Today technology is infused everywhere because convenience is in full demand and manufacturers incorporating it in all their new products. It is all perfect and worthwhile until their child is diagnosed with leukemia or comes down with an autoimmune disease making them electrosensitive.
This is why we like to say that smart homes = sick people.
HOW MUCH IS TOO MUCH?
Where do you draw the line between health and convenience?
Today’s technology is very cool. Who can argue that knowing instantly if your water system is leaking, or knowing if you left the oven on when you leave the house is not a good thing? The problem is that all of this stuff is connected wirelessly to the internet. Gigabytes of information are flying past, around and through the inhabitants of a house usually to a 5g router that transports that information to a cloud. What is wrong with that? Electromagnetic fields (EMFs) are the things that make your smartphone work, and allow your doorbell to communicate with your refrigerator. The question is how much is too much technology and where do you draw the line between health and convenience?
WHAT’S THE HARM?
Weakened nervous system
Lou Gehrig’s disease
Itchy or burning skin
The International Commission for Electromagnetic Safety (ICEMS) and the National Institute for the Study and Control of Cancer and Environmental Diseases published a report, “Non-thermal Effects and Mechanisms of Interaction Between Electromagnetic Fields and Living Matter” in 2010.
This was an international effort by scientists to compile what was known at that time about the biological effects and mechanisms of action, and included studies showing EMFs create oxidative stress, blood-brain barrier permeability, genotoxic and fertility effects, heat shock (or stress) proteins, changes in the autonomic nervous system (ANS) and in neurotransmitters, and much more.
They say: “In children, we are seeing increases in psychiatric disorders, psychotropic medication use, chronic medical conditions, delinquency, addictions, aggression, sensory integration issues, and disability filings.”
BEHIND THE SCIENCE
There has been numerous studies how EMFs and RFs (wireless, cellular) have been found to cause a large number of illnesses in people, animals and plantlife. The BioInitiative Report synthesizes the key findings of thousands of scientific studies showing biological effects from electromagnetic fields.
The U.K. publication, Electromagnetic Sensitivity and Electromagnetic Hypersensitivity contains references to 1,800 studies showing effects of low-intensity exposures.
There exists decades of military Radiofrequency (RF) research showing risk, much foreign research, and even an industry-funded review, “Mobile Telecommunications and Health,” prepared by the Ecolog Institute, which was issued in 2000 and lays out the known risks in great detail, including DNA risks, cancer risks and risks to children.
SECURITY AND PRIVACY
HOW SECURE IS YOUR DOORBELL?
On top of all that science, what happens when someone hacks into your security system? How secure is your doorbell? Do you think someone might be able to get into your email or bank account once they are connected to your home system? Believe it… It can happen.
Norton has even published an article offering tips to help secure all of the numerous smart devices in the modern home.
DESIGNWELL FOR WELL BEING
At DesignWell we consult with homeowner, builders, architects and developers on how to incorporate environmental wellness methods into their projects.
Let’s work together on designing and building homes that support the environment and human health and well being!
We are a growing company with a passion for the health and wellbeing of people. We are NOT anti-technology. We have smartphones. We wrote this on computers connected to the internet.
It is important WHERE your project is located, as well as how you use technology, and what is necessary vs. what seems cool. We have helped enough sick people that we understand what they need to do so they can heal in a supportive and inspiring environment. What would be ideal would be to get them into houses designed so they don’t get sick in the first place!