In today’s world, environmental concerns are perfectly justifiable when it comes to the building materials we use. We want buildings that are aesthetically pleasing, sturdy, and practical, but they also need to be environmentally friendly.
One great way to achieve this is buy using oak to complete your project. Not only is oak sturdy, but it’s also an excellent insulator, looks amazing, and most importantly, it has a limited impact on the environment.
By using responsibly sourced oak, you’re using a product that is highly sustainable. Oak is an amazing wood to use in all sorts of products from furniture to buildings, so you might think the high demand is putting a strain on oak trees however, the majority of European and American oak comes from long-term, sustainable projects.
This means there is plenty of supply and you’re not taking precious resources from the Earth.
There’s Less Waste
When you build with oak, all of your offcuts can be used for an alternative purpose. Whether you have big pieces of wood left over, small pieces of wood, or simply sawdust, all of it can be reused for another purpose. All too often in today’s society, we throw away the bits we don’t need, but when you build with oak, you can always find a second home for the bits you don’t use.
Oak trees are brilliant absorbers of carbon dioxide. During the life of the tree, the oak will spend its time absorbing carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and this continues as the wood is used for building purposes. For this reason, responsibly resourced oak is deemed carbon neutral, allowing your build to leave a smaller carbon footprint on the planet.
Oak trees are built to last. To give you an idea of their longevity, some oaks don’t start producing acorns until they are 50 years old, so you know the wood is going to last.
Not only does oak last a long time, but it’s also very sturdy, which is why you will find oak structures that have lasted hundreds of years. The environmental benefit with this is that you don’t have to constantly replace materials. This can save a lot of energy over time.
Unlike many other building materials, oak occurs naturally. You don’t have to go through an energy intensive process to create oak, instead, it is created in a way that gives back to the environment.
The oak tree absorbs carbon dioxide and returns oxygen into the environment, therefore oak has been created in a far more environmentally friendly way than many alternative building materials.
According to PBC Today, “operation and maintenance costs can account for 80% of a building’s total running costs over its lifetime.” By using materials such as oak that age well, we not only save financially, but environmentally too.
The environmental benefits of building with oak start with the build, but they keep going long after you’ve completed the project.