Choose wood with an ecologically responsible footprint
Wood is becoming increasingly popular as a construction material, as are buildings constructed in accordance with documentable sustainability standards. It therefore makes a lot of sense to choose wood from FSC®-certified forests, as it guarantees social, economic and environmental responsibility.
Troldtekt buys large quantities of FSC-certified wood – and since 2018 has been an approved supplier of acoustic panels in which all the wood meets the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) requirements.
All over the world, construction activities are responsible for emitting large volumes of carbon into the atmosphere. However, by using wood as the primary construction material, buildings can instead make a positive environmental impact. And when the wood is FSC-certified, developers and consultants are able to document that it comes from responsibly managed forests.
The Forest Stewardship Council is an international, non-profit labelling and certification system for wood and paper. The scheme enjoys widespread support among green organisations such as the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF), among other things because the FSC attaches equal importance to social, environmental and economic interests.
“Our standards at a global level are based on the same overarching principles and criteria, which makes the scheme transparent, irrespective of country. In all, FSC covers more than 200 indicators, which are interpreted nationally to ensure the greatest possible value in each country,” explains Loa Dalgaard Worm, Director of Strategy and Business Development at the FSC in Denmark, where Troldtekt is FSC-certified.
Certified forests gaining ground
FSC-certified products contribute positively to the certification of sustainable buildings, for example under the popular schemes DGNB, LEED and BREEAM. It is therefore only natural that FSC-certified forests are gaining ground in step with the growing focus on sustainability in the construction sector.
Some facts from FSC International:
- Worldwide, there are approx. 195 million hectares of FSC-certified forests in 84 countries. This area is now 30 per cent larger than it was just seven years ago.
- In all, 50 per cent of the world’s FSC forests are located in Europe and Russia, while 34 per cent are found in North America.
- Sweden is the north European country with the most FSC-certified forests – covering a total of 13.4 million hectares.
According to Loa Dalgaard Worm, developers, architects and consultants can contribute to further promoting the use of wood from responsibly managed forests in construction. She is calling on them to choose wood products based on their functionality, as a way of ensuring an adequate supply of certified wood, also globally:
“In general, we find that people know very little about the properties of the different wood species, which has led to a lot of demand for a limited number of species, which are now under considerable pressure. Why not look for woods with similar properties among the other 60,000 tree species in the world?”
“Generally speaking, wood has many outstanding properties, which can also contribute positively to achieving several of the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). By using wood for a building’s load-bearing structure rather than brick, you can easily reduce carbon emissions by 20 per cent, and often far more – providing, of course, that the wood comes from sustainable forestry operations,” says Loa Dalgaard Worm.
Troldtekt keen to use more FSC wood
Troldtekt sources large volumes of FSC-certified wood from Danish forests – and would like to buy even more once more woods and forests in Denmark hopefully become certified. Troldtekt was FSC-certified in 2013, and since 2018 has been approved to deliver acoustic panels in the ‘FSC 100%’ (FSC®C115450) category. This means that all the wood in each panel meets the FSC requirements.
“A significant proportion of our production is FSC-certified panels, but we would like to increase this share even more. Our strategy is based on sustainable production, and the market is ripe for larger volumes of certified products – we are seeing a growing demand,” says Peer Leth, CEO at Troldtekt A/S.
In addition to the sustainable benefits of FSC, he mentions new research from the Birmingham Institute of Forest Research (BIoFR). Here, researchers have found that young trees (less than 140 years old) in newer, replanted forests absorb and store more carbon dioxide than old trees in rainforests, for example.
“This ties in well with our processes, as we receive Norway spruce from young Danish production forests, where FSC certification documents that no more trees are felled than the forest can reproduce on its own, at the same time as documenting a number of other environmental and social factors,” says Peer Leth.
From forest to factory
Troldtekt acoustic panels are completely natural products, in which all the raw wood comes from Danish forests. And this is how we want it to be in future also, according to Peer Leth:
“An alternative to using Danish wood would be importing wood from Sweden or Norway, but that would impact our sustainability profile because of the long-distance transport involved. We are therefore very keen to see more FSC-certified forests in Denmark.”
Facts: 10 benefits of choosing FSC wood
- FSC guarantees that care is taken of the plant and animal species inhabiting the forests as well as forestry workers.
- The FSC label guarantees that no more trees are felled than the forest can reproduce itself.
- Tracts of FSC-certified forests are spared commercial logging, and areas with endangered flora and fauna are protected.
- The rights of indigenous peoples such as Indians and Sami to use the forest as they always have done are protected. For example, sacred areas and hunting grounds are protected from felling.
- Local workers are trained, given safety equipment and paid a decent wage.
- The local population benefits from the income from the forest, and the use of local Labour.
- All wood can be traced back to sustainably managed forests and responsible sources. All stages of production – from forest to factory – are certified.
- FSC certification offers viable business opportunities – for forest owners, workers and manufacturers. As an added advantage, FSC ensures healthier ecosystems and better living and working conditions for people.
- All forest types can be FSC-certified, from Nordic coniferous forests to tropical rainforests – including plantations.
- The FSC label is found on all types of products which are made from wood fibre, for example floors, patios, paper, charcoal, insulation, furniture, interiors, jewellery and packaging.
Source: FSC Danmark
Loa Dalgaard Worm,
Director of Strategy and Business Development at the FSC in Denmark.