Wood’s benefits go beyond health and wellness, it also impacts the environment

“The bottom line is this: timber is a powerful medium for carbon capture, storage, and usage – and using it sustainably can benefit the environment greatly”

If you’re reading this blog, the chances are you’re already a fan of timber. You probably work with it, and understand its versatility as a construction material, as well as its aesthetic appeal. You may have read previously, on this very website, about the wellness benefits wood can have on individuals surrounded by it, which include better mental health. You may even have heard that timber is a sustainable material, and its use benefits the environment… but do you know how? Today, we’re going to tell you.

Sustainably, ethically harvested, timber embraces natural cycles, and can be used forever. If you keep planting trees, and you use timber sensibly, there’s no risk of ever running out. And unlike plastics and other man-made materials, creating timber is not a burden on the ecosystem – it does, in fact, help to protect it.

How does timber protect the ecosystem? According to Wood Technology Society chairman John Park, by acting as a naturally occurring carbon capture and storage technology! In a recent commentary on wood’s environmental friendliness, he wrote:

“Wood, depending on tree species, comprises, in varying amounts, cellulose (40-55%), hemicellulose (12-15%), lignin (15-30%) and extractives (2-15%). From that it is determined that wood is, by weight, 50% carbon […] this European Standard provides a calculation method […] to quantify the amount of atmospheric carbon dioxide, absorbed by trees as they grow, based on the biogenic carbon content.”

In layman’s terms, what this means is that trees soak up harmful carbon dioxide (the most famous of the greenhouse gasses contributing to global warming) simply as a by-product of their own chemical constitution. While Silicon Valley billionaires discuss carbon capture and storage technology, nature has already provided us with it!

That’s why it’s so important to use sustainably sourced timber, ensuring that the supply continues to be replenished.

At Quercus, we stock a wide variety of timber suitable for almost anything you require. And we’re always happy to offer our expert opinion on what timber would be most suitable for your project. Most of all, we hold Forest Stewardship Council certification, meaning you can rest assured that our timber is not only top quality, but guaranteed to be ethically and sustainably sourced. That means it’s good for your customers, for the timber trade, and – as demonstrated above – the environment itself.