Interviews With Toxic Free Innovators


Choosing and Maintaining A Toxic Free Cutting Board

michael-galMy guest today is Michal Gal, founder of Urthware. His wooden cutting boards are made with exactly the materials I would choose if I were designing a cutting board, and they are beautiful. Michael is a proud husband and father of three, who decided to look deeper into companies and their products. After a lot of researching outfitting his kitchen with more natural and safe cookware he found that there were no cutting boards that were up to his standards. So he made one for himself using no petroleum based finishes and no glues, just natural wood and oils. People kept asking him if he could make one for them, and Urthware was born.




What You Need to Know About Your HVAC and Indoor Air Quality

Today my guest is Judy Rachel, a Home Performance Professional specializing in third party, independent home energy audits, best green building practices specifications and HVAC system design. We’ll be talking about the basics of how your HVAC works, choosing correct filters, why we have indoor air quality problems and how to solve them, and how to get to know your HVAC system so you can use it properly. Judy writes and teaches building science / energy efficiency curricula for various community and city colleges, as well as for workforce training programs. She provides both classroom and hands-on trainings. She is a senior lead trainer for Efficiency First California, training contractors in the Home Performance with Energy Star curriculum. She is a lead trainer for Energy Conservation Institute’s Building Performance Institute (BPI) Certification trainings. Judy is President of the Eco-Home Network, a non-profit devoted to greening as many homes as possible. She is the field mentor for contractors participating in the Southern California Home Upgrade program. Along with being certified as a Building Analyst, Envelope Specialist, Heating Specialist and A/C and Heat Pump Professional through BPI, she is a field proctor for these certifications. As a HERS rater (Home Energy Rater) she does diagnostic testing, verifications and inspections for residential and small commercial buildings to ensure compliance with California’s Energy Code. Certified by Build It Green, she is a GreenPoint rater for new construction and a Certified Green Building Professional. Through National Comfort Institute she holds their Air Balancing and Carbon Monoxide & Combustion Certifications. Judy thinks the most amazing part of what she does is that by creating energy efficient homes she is actually able to improve the comfort, durability, indoor air quality, as well as, occupant safety within homes.




Designing a Toxic-Free Home

Lisa Kauffman TharpMy guest today is Lisa K. Tharp, founder of K. Tharp Design. Lisa caught my attention when she demonstrated her understanding of design practices that are healthy for people the planet in her design of the award-winning Concord Green Healthy Home. We’ll be talking about how she incorporates toxic-free choices in design and how you can too. Plus, Lisa will share her 5 steps for recovery for people with MCS. K. Tharp Design is a full-service, boutique design firm specializing in luxury level interiors—environments thoughtfully designed to satisfy and delight the senses. Whether designing a relaxed beach house, gracious country home or sophisticated city residence, Lisa loves helping each client find and reflect their own personal style in spaces that are inviting, comfortable and functional. Lisa hit the Boston design scene in 2012, when her first project landed on the cover of Design New England magazine and was broadcast by This Old House Productions. Visual skills, honed from years of filming and photography during Lisa’s first career in video production and brand management (Time Life, HBO, Kraft General Foods) inform her sense of composition, lighting and scale. Inspired by each new project’s architecture, local vernacular and setting, Lisa calls upon classical proportions, modern form, fine art and nature itself to produce work described as “a fresh take on classic design”. She collaborates with architects and building teams on new construction and renovations, and often creates bespoke furnishings, lighting and original art for her clients.




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What’s Happening With Toxic Free Talk Radio

The Monday after Christmas I was surprised to receive an email from the network saying they could no longer produce my radio show. They were very sorry because they loved the show, but changes on their end made it impossible for us to continue.

I love doing the show and it’s likely that live interviews will return at some point as podcasts or a radio show on another network, but for now I have my work cut out for me to transfer 386 mp3 files from the network site to mine, and change all the links in the archives. It will all be an upgrade though because my site will now have the shows directly in a media player that works with all devices.

I’m also going to continue making transcripts for all the shows that don’t already have transcripts, and edit all the files to remove commercials and music for a more seamless listening experience. These are great interviews and I am making sure they are being preserved for future reference.

Each week I’ll be posting three featured shows from the archives and include them in the newsletter. There is a lot to listen to and learn from!