Carbon Impact Of Wood Products

Using wood reduces our carbon footprint in two key ways—through carbon storage and avoided greenhouse gas emissions. As trees grow, they absorb carbon dioxide (CO2) from the atmosphere, release the oxygen (O2), and incorporate the carbon into their wood, leaves or needles, roots and surrounding soil. One of three things then happens: When the trees get older, they start to decay and slowly release the stored carbon, the forest succumbs to wildfire, insects or disease and releases the carbon quickly, the trees are harvested and manufactured into products, which continue to store much of the carbon. (Wood is 50 percent carbon by dry weight.1) In all of these cases, the cycle begins again as the forest regenerates and young seedlings once again begin absorbing CO2.
The other aspect to wood’s light carbon footprint is the fact that wood products typically require less energy to manufacture than other building materials, and most of that comes from renewable biomass (e.g., bark and other residual fiber) instead of fossil fuels. Substituting wood for fossil fuel-intensive materials is a way of avoiding greenhouse gas emissions. Wood products have many environmental advantages over nonwood alternatives. Documenting and publicizing these merits helps the future competitiveness of wood when climate change impacts are being considered. The manufacture of wood products requires less fossil fuel than nonwood alternative building materials such as concrete, metals, or plastics. By nature, wood is composed of carbon that is captured from the atmosphere during tree growth. These two effects—substitution and sequestration—are why the carbon impact of wood products is favorable. Some of the longest-lived wood products are those used for housing and light industrial buildings, estimated to have a useful life of at least 80 years. For every use of wood there are alternatives, for example, wood studs can be replaced by steel studs, wood floors by concrete slab floors and woody biofuels by fossil fuel.

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Value of Buying Handmade vs Mass Produced

The Value of Buying Handmade vs. Mass Produced items can be measured in many different ways depending on a person’s perspective.Regardless if an item is handcrafted or mass produced, people want a good deal. How you determine what a good deal is can be very subjective and not necessarily limited to what’s written in this post.Some people are more proactive in seeking out handmade or custom made products. The reasons for this can vary greatly. Many like to comparison shop and may be less interested in handcrafted and more interested in a bargain deal regardless if its handcrafted or factory made.
Some of us shop with a sense of political savvy and greater understanding of the questionable practices certain corporations engage in to gain political favors, tax breaks and loop holes that largely go unchecked and not questioned. Those of us that are aware of this may protest or boycott these corporations. Handmade items would be an alternative source.Companies have been forced to wake up and look closer at both their own manufacturing methods and their suppliers. Regardless if a product is handmade or mass produced, if it in some way violates a real or perceived sense of ethics or morals it will likely cause some consumers to look elsewhere for the products they want or need.


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6 Reasons Wooden Cutting Boards Are Best

I have had numerous people over the years ask me why they should purchase a wood cutting board over plastic or glass. This post explains why wooden cutting boards are better and why I only use wood cutting boards in my kitchen.

Wooden Cutting Boards Kill Bacteria

The problem is that while it may seem like plastic is non-porous and can’t absorb liquids, with use the surface becomes knife-scarred. This rough surface is exceptionally difficult to clean, even with bleach or running through the dishwasher. Wood, by contrast, shows the ability to halt the growth of and kill bacteria applied to its surface. Both new and used wooden cutting boards maintain this ability equally well.

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