City living has shown to be incredibly popular in Australia, with a majority of individuals living coastally in what are becoming booming metropolises. It’s in these areas of infrastructure and urban lifestyle that the raging issue of deforestation has been going too long ignored. While most Australian’s avoid items containing palm oil due to its links to deforestation in Asia, they will most likely be unaware of the deforestation apparent in their own country.
With major issues transpiring around deforestation issues in Victoria’s East Gippsland, this subject is going to have key effects on an industry that relies on timber and wood as fundamental elements. Without which, the construction arena would see a complete upheaval in supply and work method.
It is in part the above issues, as well as seeing the global results of deforestation, that construction companies are now looking to sustainable suppliers of wood. The idea of sustainable wood seems somewhat paradoxical, but it is in essence the recycling, re use, or specific growth of trees in order to be used for construction means. Not only is this aiding in the promotion of anti-deforestation campaigns, it is aiding manufacturers to grow and use the best possible woods for different specific purposes.
This sustainable wood, labeled ‘good wood’ by Greenpeace Australia, can be seen in practice Australia wide. In a case study on the Greenpeace Australia’s web associate ‘The Good Wood Guide’ a Brisbane timber supplier explains the effects of eco-timber from the Guadalcanal as a community beneficiary as well as a sustainable option. Although there is an additional amount on the timber at present, he states it is leading the way into future construction, and foresees a future where this type of timber will be the only on the market.
A number of companies are promoting sustainable timber, as major companies are becoming increasingly aware of their carbon footprint and its cost both monetary and to the environment. Companies such as Futurewood who provide ‘eco-wood’ for decking and fencing, and promote itself as “helping to reduce dependence on precious timber”. It is also this factor that it appealing to construction companies. Logging of precious timbers, timbers that are limited in numbers brings the price up due to more demand than supply. Sustainable timber includes areas of growth that are specifically supplied for consumption. After this, they are re-grown. In using plain timber for specific growth, the supply can more readily reflect the demand, as it is a conscious application, thus evening pricing levels.
Further companies providing sustainable wood are Eco-options and Wright Forest Products.
In their online 2003-2004 budget portfolio Forest & Wood Products Research and Development Corporation concluded Australian sustainable wood to be “an internationally competitive and sustainable forest and wood products industry that strengthens Australian communities and meets consumer expectations”.
This in turn mirrored the statement of Agricultural Fisheries Forestry (AFF), incorporating partners in the portfolio.
When industry companies use ‘good wood’ on their worksites, and in construction they are not only promoting sustainability, but also getting value for money. It is the obvious answer for industries looking for ways to reduce their carbon footprint and avoid being slugged heavily by the proposed carbon tax.
Image: as sourced from south pine striders online