Timber is traded globally. For example, Austria is the source of CLT products across Europe and as far away as Australia. Furthermore, 30% of timber used in Austria is imported (Klimaaktiv 2020). Canada exports timber to Europe and many European countries import a large part of their structural timber: France imports 25% of its consumption (EOS 2019). Long supply chains inevitably bring emissions and energy use that are often not accounted for in assessing the credentials of timber (European Organisation of the Sawmill Industry 2019).
Long supply chains inevitably bring emissions and energy use that are often not accounted for in assessing the credentials of timber.
Concrete is locally available
In comparison concrete is a local product with raw materials locally available. The key ingredient cement (approx. 10-15% of concrete by weight) is also locally available as it is based on limestone which is widely and abundantly available. For commercial reasons there is some trade in cement between countries – to the tune of approx. 5% (Global Cement 2017), which equates to less than (0.5%) of concrete by weight.
Facts & Fallacies
Strength, durability resilience & safety
Society expects the built environment – buildings, bridges and other infrastructure – to be enduring and safe – safety is the first priority.
Trees are the ‘lungs of the planet’. They absorb atmospheric CO2 and play a critical role in the fight against climate change. Trees, and the biodiversity that they support, are under threat from deforestation.
To know if a material is really ecological, it is important to look at the whole life of the product from sourcing/extraction of raw materials, including the different processes and treatments transportation, in use maintenance and end of life.