Life in the Green Lane

Environmental journalist Candice Batista shares video clips and eco-savvy advice from her TV show, A Greener Toronto.

Levels of air pollution inside the home can be two to five times higher (and occasionally 100 times higher) than outdoor levels. (Source: Environmental Protection Agency, 2002) Mold, dust mites, dust mite droppings and volatile organic compounds are just some of the gross things we as Canadian breathe in on a regular basis. You may be surprised to know that our indoor air quality is much worse than our outdoor air quality. Yes, here in Toronto, we suffer with way too much smog, but did you know that our homes are filled with invisible chemicals, mold, pet dander, dust, dust mites... you get the idea. The need for clean air indoors cannot be underestimated, quite literally, invisible indoor air pollutants can make you and your family sick. There is help though! I recently met up with the folks at Canary Air Quality Assurance® ; they provide homeowners with an indoor air quality index audit. It's similar to a home energy audit, but if focuses on the air inside your home. Trust me you would be shocked to know what is hiding in your home. Here's how the audit works, Canary Air Quality Assurance® will place a number of devices throughout your home, mostly in rooms that are used very frequently. These machines spend twenty four hours in your home and basically breathe in the air that is circulating throughout your house. With Canary's innovative technology, your home's air is scientifically analyzed, and a detailed report is issued including suggestions for corrective measures. Six key air quality factors, recognized as critical by Canada's Healthy Indoors Partnership (HIP), are analyzed and compared to acceptable levels. These factors include: temperature, humidity, carbon dioxide, carbon monoxide, particles and total volatile organic compounds (TVOCs). We spend an average of ninety per cent of our time inside; and the air indoors contains many substances that may be hazardous to our health. These pollutants range from minor irritants such as dust and animal dander, noted above, to major concerns like molds and chemical vapors that may come from building materials and furnishings. Asthma and allergy sufferers will truly benefit from this cool technology. To learn more visit