We have planted 1000!“But is using wood really sustainable?”. It’s a question we hear often and the answer is “Absolutely yes… and for various reasons”.
Wood is a renewable resource
It only needs air, water and sun to grow and, if well managed, it can be inexhaustible: the forests of Veneto alone produce 100 cubic meters of wood every minute, the same amount needed to build a house! But the tree has a life cycle: the older it gets, the slower it grows, the less it absorbs carbon dioxide, the more it risks rotting. The PEFC and FSC forest management plans regulate cutting by limiting it to mature plants which they replace with new trees, so the forests are renewed and with them the production of oxygen and the storage of carbon dioxide. In Italy we are quite good, but we could do better: forests occupy 36% of its surface and have grown by 1 million hectares in the last 30 years. We take only a third of what grows back, much less than in other European countries. Part of the Italian timber remains in the woods to degrade and we buy processed products from abroad, which we could obtain at home.
Wood is an ecological material unlike others
To produce and process iron, steel, aluminum and plastic, large quantities of energy from fossil fuels such as oil and coal are consumed, with the consequent emissions of carbon dioxide. The cutting, transport and processing of wood from certified forests, on the other hand, takes place only with mechanical means with limited energy consumption, without heat dispersion or the release of harmful emissions, dust or fibres. Not only that, wood is the only building material that does not take resources away from the territory, because it is renewed in a very short time: if the wood used for a house is recovered from the woods in 3 hours, entire mountains were consumed to produce the concrete. And it stands out from other materials because, at the end of its life cycle, it can in turn be reused as a source of renewable energy.
Wood can help reduce air pollution
Carbon dioxide represents 76% of man-made gases. Its progressive increase reinforces the greenhouse effect at the origin of global warming, the most urgent environmental problem of our planet. Wood can be of great help. In fact, during its life each tree absorbs carbon dioxide by subtracting it from the atmosphere and releases oxygen into the environment as a result of photosynthesis. Once its wood is transformed into a house, furniture or any other artifact, it continues to retain it, making an essential contribution to reducing the carbon dioxide content in the atmosphere. Only when it decomposes or is burned does it release carbon dioxide into the atmosphere: the same amount that it stole from it as it grew, therefore with zero impact.
Wood is versatile and 100% recyclable
It has always been one of the most used materials and over time it has entered our daily lives in different forms: as building and carpentry materials, for the production of packaging such as pallets and crates, musical instruments, toys, paper and cardboard, viscose… Even its waste is precious, exploited by the furniture industry to produce agglomerates, by paper mills to make cellulose pulp, in green building for cement blocks, in transformation plants for compost, by incineration plants for the production of energy and heat. To ensure lasting carbon dioxide absorption, it is important that the wood is used in several phases, extending its use cycle as much as possible. But to enjoy these benefits there is a fundamental condition: the wood must be obtained from forests in a sustainable way. This is why in the projects we develop for our customers and in the creation of the objects for sale in our shop, we promote the use of Italian and certified wood. And we have chosen to work alongside two partners who guarantee responsible collection.
The Local Wood Forestry Consortium was born in Caltrano, in the province of Vicenza. It is a set of small entrepreneurial realities which, animated by the spirit of collaboration between the experiences of each partner, have organized themselves into a structure that promotes the short and local supply chain and the ethical management of wood. It is able to offer various services to companies, individuals and public bodies: from green and forest management, to wood certification, training, up to the production of furnishing works made only with wood from controlled and certified sources.
The passion for wood and life in the woods led Andrea Zenari first around the world to have different forest experiences and then to create The wood farm, inspired by trees farms in North America: nurseries dedicated to the production of Christmas trees and the enhancement of the area through tourism and educational activities related to wood. His farm does it all year round, offering families, schools and professionals courses, recreational and therapeutic activities, but also products from the land or made with wood from his forests. And it manages the planting and cutting in a sustainable way, through forest certification PEFC.
Over the years, we have shared many experiences with them that have enriched us: those in support of some areas hit by hurricane Vaia in 2018, first with the initiative The Veneto does not give up and then with the construction of the Museo del Vaia; training, with the first level course for the use of chainsaw; the Chain of Custody Certification PEFC, which we achieved in July 2020. And we continue to support them: in 2020 we purchased 320 spruce and birch seedlings, which together with the 300 in 2019 and the 400 in 2018, will give new life to the woods managed by Fattoria del Legno within the Forestry Consortium. Happy to have exceeded the quota of 1000 trees planted! Because the commitment to environmental sustainability is something we strongly believe in and that really can’t wait any longer. Let us remember that, as someone said, “the earth on which we live was not left to us by our parents, but our children are lending it to us“!