Ask An Expert

Home » Expert Advice » Ask An Expert

I am trying to obtain a (concise as possible) list of timbers for furniture making that are sustainable as well as those that are to be avoided from an environmental standpoint. Can you help?

Woodsolutions Answer +

We are more familiar with the regulatory controls on Australian-produced timbers than those of other parts of the world, and you can be assured that any timber produced in this country is subject to the most rigorous monitoring. For more information about Australia's forests, refer to Australia's State of the Forests Report. This report is produced every five years and the latest (2013) edition can be ordered in hard copy, or downloaded here. Regarding imported timbers, species that are endangered are prohibited imports and not likely to be encountered in the marketplace. You can find more information about these species on the Convention on International Trade of Endangered Species (CITES) website at http://www.cites.org. Regarding species that are not necessarily endangered, but still might be unsustainably managed, the best way to deal with this issue is to seek out products certified by a credible third-party organisation. Banning certain species is not constructive (unless they are endangered), since this catches up producers who are operating sustainably, as well as those who aren't. Exporting countries are mostly well aware of the need to manage their forests sustainably and it is more helpful to support their efforts than to discriminate against their timber. Some developing countries are still working towards the goal of sustainability. For more on the this issue, go to the International Tropical Timber website at http://www.itto.int. The latest newsletter in their Tropical Forest Update series includes an editorial on Sustainable Forest Industries.

substainability forest

How much carbon goes up in producing 1 tonne of steel and how much carbon is absorbed by 1 cubic metre of pine. This may help us in selling timber pergolas versus steel.

Woodsolutions Answer +

It's estimated by one environmental group that producing 1 tonne of steel releases about 1 tonne of CO2. By contrast, 1 cubic metre of pine has a dry weight of about 500 kg, half of which is carbon. The CO2 required to produce 250 kg of carbon is 917 kg, so 1 cubic metre of wood stores about the same amount of CO2 as production of 1 tonne of steel emits! To be fair we have to take into account the CO2 emitted in the production of 1 cubic metre of wood. The energy used in timber production varies from mill to mill, but one study puts CO2 emissions from processes such as kiln drying at around 100 kg per cubic metre of wood. So the net removal of CO2 from the atmosphere would then be 917 - 100 = 817 kg, which still puts wood well ahead.

Environment Recycling Carbon

I was wondering if you could provide me with any information surrounding fixing details for timber frame work in cyclonic areas in Western Australia.

Woodsolutions Answer +

The reference for timber framed construction in cyclonic areas is Australian Standard 1684, Residential timber-framed construction, Part 3: Cyclonic areas. You can obtain a copy of AS 1684.3 from Standards Australia.

AS 1684.3, cyclone, cyclonic areas, WA
Sign up or Login to continue reading the answer.

Displaying 0/0

Show me 10 /20 /30

Haven't found what you're looking for?

If you have not found the answer for your question for in the Search results, please call the Expert Advice line or send us an email for a prompt response.



Call the WoodSolutions Expert Advice line on 1300 414 044*
Available Mon - Fri: 9am - 5pm

*Please note, there is a charge, determined by your telecommunications provider, for these calls.
This service is not available to international callers.

Are you looking for a supplier?

Social Media Feeds