We hope that you’ll agree with us that even more important than the actual color of decking lumber is the fact that it’s a truly green building product! In addition to the lumber industry’s capitalizing on lumber’s renewable nature through responsible replanting practices and contribution to forest health through adding commercial value to forests, the lumber industry does more to encourage biosequestration than any other industry. Let us explain how.
Lumber Industry Practices Create New Growth
As much as we might think that old growth forests are the ideal, the ecosystem actually benefits most when new trees are being planted, especially when replanting is occurring more often than harvesting. In addition, young trees in “rapid growth mode” sequester Carbon more than mature trees do. While mature trees still sequester Carbon, they no longer do so at the same rate they used to when younger. So if we could create an initiative similar to the Yasuni-ITT Initiative where forests are left untouched for long periods of time, it would honestly not allow trees to benefit the global ecosystem at the same rate that they can when they’re allowed to undergo the harvesting and replanting that the lumber industry promotes.
Forestry Management Encourages Better Health
Again, it might seem ideal for forestry management to happen on its own; but in reality, good forestry management is a sort of byproduct of the lumber industry. Because of the industry’s vested interest in the continued health of the forest, the lumber industry has the motivation needed to allot the finances necessary in order to promote healthy forests. What happens without proper forestry management? Best case scenario, forests may grow into old growth forests (but as we’ve already discussed, that’s not actually ideal). Often, though, unmanaged forests fall prey to forest fires. Unlike lumber that’s allowed to naturally rot, taking its sequestered Carbon with it, burned wood releases the Carbon it formerly sequestered back into the atmosphere. (Of course, that’s far from the only negative result of forest fires. We certainly can’t compare that issue to the lost lives due to these tragic conditions.)
Re-purposed Lumber Extends the Benefits
Today’s increasing environmental consciousness has given way to the trend of using reclaimed lumber, extending the usefulness of centuries-old barn wood for use in furniture, flooring, decorating, and more. When reclaimed lumber is used instead of manufactured products, the decreased demand for those products can lessen the Carbon footprint of our society. And remember, even when wood does decay, it takes the Carbon it sequesters with it.
The natural beauty of wood may begin when it’s fully intact, standing tall in the forest. But it also continues to give back in multiple ways. In addition to the literal beauty inherent in its unique grain and coloring, each tree and board contributes to our global ecology in a way that we find even more attractive.
Further Explore the Lumber Industry
J. Gibson McIlvain Company
The McIlvain family has been immersed in the premium import & domestic lumber industry since 1798. Headquartered just outside of Baltimore, the J. Gibson McIlvain Company is one of the largest U.S. importers of exotic woods. As an active supporter of sustainable lumber practices, the J. Gibson McIlvain Company has provided fine lumber for high profile construction projects worldwide. Call (800) 638-9100 to speak with a J. Gibson McIlvain representative.