Despite the many advantages of building with timber, the mass adoption of timber as a building material is evolving at a rather slow rate. This is due in part to the many misconceptions about building with timber, or common “timber myths”. The newly published booklet ‘Discussing Timber Myths’ dispels the most common of these myths. It simultaneously opens discussions around contested topics such as fire safety of timber construction, wood availability, and forestry best practices.
Why is a shift towards timber construction necessary?
Traditional building materials like concrete, steel, and brick continue to dominate the construction industry, despite their detrimental impact on our climate and environment. However, climate change, material scarcity, and the housing shortage demand the adoption of alternative building materials and technologies that drastically minimize environmental harm caused by the building sector. Building with timber is a suitable alternative: timber can be prefabricated, it provides a healthy indoor climate, causes lower CO2 and nitrogen emissions—rather, it stores carbon—and facilitates circularity and renewability.
“Building with timber could be one of the golden nuggets we have in the fight against climate change. As we set increasingly ambitious targets, we published this booklet to bring along as many stakeholders as possible in the timber transition, from insurers to constructors and from project developers to policy makers.”
Program Developer Circularity in Urban Regions
‘Discussing Timber Myths’
The booklet aims to accelerate the European uptake of timber in construction as a viable and scalable material with clear environmental benefits. It is aimed at an audience that is both layman and expert. The publication serves as a primary evidence base for strategic decision-making in the construction and development sector and auxiliary sectors such as finance, insurance and public policy.
The publication is an initiative of AMS Institute, funded by the Built by Nature Foundation. The booklet was written by Pablo van der Lugt, Irene Luque Martin and Joke Dufourmont, and came into being thanks to the inputs of some of Europe’s leading experts on timber construction and forestry from, amongst others, the Technical University of Delft, Wageningen University & Research, the Institute for Advanced Architecture in Catalonia, the Danish Technological Institute and the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research.
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