Green Design green hardwood floors

Published on November 29th, 2008 | by Joel Bittle

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Eco Timber Offers Comprehensive Online Green Flooring Guide

Can your hardwood floors contribute to global warming?  Which hardwoods are certified by the Forest Stewardship Council?  Are some types of bamboo greener than others?  Eco Timber’s Eco-Friendly Flooring Guide is a valuable source for information on sustainable hardwood flooring and a must read for any green builder.  The Richmond, California based company has promoted responsible harvesting of timber and sustainable practices such as reclaiming and salvaging wood (their guide tells you the difference between reclaimed and salvaged wood) since 1992.

Topics in the guide range from legal and illegal logging and responsible forestry to the presence of formaldehyde and other volatile organic compounds in the wood and adhesives.  Eco Timber tackles every step in the process from subfloors to floor pads to the panels themselves.  Looking for a specific hardness of wood?  They’ve got a scale.  Do you already have a hardwood floor and want advice on green care and maintenance?  Eco Timber has a section on maintenance, surface scratching, and refinishing.

From the guide:

Wood as an Eco-Friendly Building Material

As a material, wood is inherently “green,” especially in comparison to non renewable resources such as steel and concrete. The manufacturing of a non renewable building material such as steel studs requires 25x more water, it causes 2x the water pollution and creates 3x more CO2 in the atmosphere. Besides being renewable, wood is non-toxic, energy-efficient to grow and manufacture, as well as recyclable and biodegradable. Wood is the only major building material whose production yields life sustaining oxygen and absorbs the main agent of global warming, carbon dioxide.

Wood can be a truly sustainable resource, but to realize that potential it must be sourced and produced responsibly. Eco friendly wood can come from salvaged, reclaimed and recycled sources, or it can come from ecologically well managed forests and plantations.

Eco Timber’s Guide to Eco-Friendly Flooring is a valuable, concise tool for anyone building green.

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Picture courtesy of Eco Timber




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About the Author

Joel Bittle is the director of RSI Green, the green building division of RSI Kitchen & Bath in St. Louis, Missouri, and is a member of the St. Louis Home Builders Association Green Builders Council. Joel has worked to bring in and promote green kitchen and bath products in the St. Louis area. Originally from California, Joel taught high school English in San Francisco and St. Louis before splitting his time raising his two daughters and developing RSI Green. Joel writes about his experiences as a stay-at-home dad in STL Homeboy



4 Responses to Eco Timber Offers Comprehensive Online Green Flooring Guide

  1. Pingback: Panasonic Expands Its Product Focus To Include Green Building Products For The Home : Green Building Elements

  2. Updating the floors in a home is still one of the biggest bangs for the buck, and with fewer bucks to go around, its nice to know there’s huge variety of eco-friendly flooring options available.

  3. Great information. Thanks for sharing with us.

  4. I even read in Japan that “green” lumbers are harvested from trees that were cut down to ‘trim’ the forest, in order for light to reach the smaller trees and all.

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