New timber industry campaign to reduce CO2 in construction

The construction industry is being urged to use more timber to meet the UK’s net zero target.

The Wood CO2ts less campaign aims to increase awareness of timber’s environmental credentials and highlight how using wood from sustainably managed forests is one of the simplest ways to help reduce carbon emissions.

Members of the timber industry collaborating on the campaign include Wood for Good and industry bodies Swedish Wood, Confor, the Timber Trade Federation (TTF), Structural Timber Association (STA) and British Woodworking Federation (BWF).

The construction industry has already taken its own steps to creating more sustainable buildings through initiatives such as the Chartered Institute of Building’s Carbon Action 2050 toolkit. The Wood CO2ts less campaign calls on the construction industry to continue this positive movement, through using more wood.

Sarah Virgo, Wood for Good campaign manager, said:

“The government set a target for the construction industry to achieve net zero carbon by 2050 but it’s not feasible for all sectors of the economy to become carbon neutral. To reach net zero, we need to compensate for these emissions by finding ways of removing carbon from the atmosphere. The simplest way to contribute to this reduction is to consider wood first, instead of other materials.

“If we are to meet government targets and reduce climate change, we must act now. Everyone involved with the design and construction of a building, new or old, can play their part in tackling the climate emergency.”

Andrew Carpenter, STA chief executive, said:

“The shortage of housing in the UK is an issue that has been acknowledged by successive governments; we must ensure that all new build homes are delivered in a high-quality and sustainable manner. Furthermore, to deliver the volume demanded with the urgency suggested, then this is also achievable by using engineered timber solutions that are predominately manufactured offsite – this also alleviates the acknowledged skill-shortage faced by the construction industry.”

Dave Hopkins, TTF chief executive, said:

“As we move along construction’s roadmap to recovery, the industry needs to make better choices now. We have the skills and resources available to create a better built environment and timber is at the heart of it all.”

To learn more about the role wood plays in construction, including design and environment data for specifying timber, and to explore best practice examples of building with timber, visit www.woodforgood.com/CO2

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