Natural Timber Natural Environment

It is a mistake to think that the environment will always be compromised if we use trees for building material. It is actually possible to use timber in ways the benefit the environment. And natural materials like timber and bamboo will, even under the worst circumstances, still cause less harm than the mining and processing of metal or the manufacturing of synthetic materials.

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Trees will absorb CO2 as they grow, which is a good thing in the age of greenhouse gas and global warming.  Most of this CO2 stays stored inside the tree.

Once a tree is fully grown the amount of CO2 that it absorbs is similar to the amount it releases; the tree and the gas are in equalibrium. Once a tree dies and starts to decompose the stored CO2 is released back into the atmosphere. The CO2 is also released if the tree is burnt. This means a forest of trees, with new trees growing and old trees dying, is in equilibrium with regard to CO2.

If we want to help remove CO2 from the atmosphere then we need to constantly grow new trees, while preventing the old trees from being burnt or suffering decomposition. We can do this by constantly growing new trees and harvesting their wood for building materials. The timber used for building stores most of the CO2, so it does no environmental harm.

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Bamboo is a grass, and grows very quickly. It matures in only a few years, though good quality bamboo that is hard enough for flooring takes seven years to properly develop. This is a much faster growth time than timber, because trees take decades to grow to maturity.

Bamboo can be very effective at removing CO2 from the atmosphere. Though care must be taken not to use land that was benefiting the environment in other ways.

Timber and bamboo can be environmentally sound building materials, especially ideal for flooring.

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