New study confirms CO2 advantages with wood
A new study published in the Journal of Sustainable Forestry, confirms that building with wood really does reduce carbon dioxide emissions. And while we talk about how wood sequesters carbon for the life of the building, that is really the smallest part of it.
The real savings come from "avoided emissions"- a square meter of wood construction replaces a significant amount of concrete that would have been made to do the same job. For the first time that I know of, instead of just comparing the CO2 per cubic meter of building materials, it actually looks at the real world usage.
Building with wood consumes much less energy than using concrete or steel. For example, a wooden floor beam requires 80 megajoules (mj) of energy per square metre of floor space and emits 4kg CO2. By comparison, a square metre of floor space supported by a steel beam requires 516 mj and emits 40 kg of CO2, and a concrete slab floor requires 290 mj and emits 27kg of CO2.
Image credit: FIEA