In the late '80s, NASA released a report addressing growing concerns about indoor air pollution. In the paper's introduction, they note a phenomenon known as "sick building syndrome," and cite a world health organization's estimate that "approximately 30 percent of all new or remodeled buildings have varying degrees of indoor air pollution.
The report calls for two main steps that would help reduce indoor air pollution. The first one, as they point out, is rather obvious: let building materials rest outside before installation to help with the off-gassing process. The second one might seem obvious now, but at the time of the report, it was a bit more surprising: we need more office plants.
In nature, plants offset a lot of the contribution that man's own waste makes to pollution, so it only makes sense that bringing them inside would accomplish a similar goal.
NASA observed several types of plants and tested them against a variety of commonly found chemicals in a typical office building. It turns out, as with most things in life, there were some winners and some losers. Impressively though, all of the plants removed at least some percentage of the chemicals being tested.
While the actual numbers will vary from the experiment in contrast with your home, it's clear that having plants inside the spaces you spend a lot of time has distinct benefits.
Check out the clip below to hear about some of the plants covered in NASA's report, and be sure to let us know what you think in the comments. When the video's over, share it with your friends on Facebook!