Green Choices Using Eco-Friendly Hard Wood Flooring
Trying to determine whether a particular product is "green" can be a daunting experience. It is important to do your research when considering the purchase of green flooring products.
Qualified dealers can help identify products that are certified as environmentally friendly, assist in ensuring the installation meets environmental standards, and provide information about the various green programs that are available. These can often lead to tax benefits and even better financing of your new home or floor.
Cork Wood Flooring is Environmentally Friendly
Cork represents a special kind of renewable resource because it is a harvested resource (only the bark is harvested from the tree). Cork floors are made from the waste cork that makes wine stoppers.
A law in the 1930's called "The 9 Year Law" was passed to keep cork from being harvested any sooner than every 9 years. The tree has to reach 60 cm in circumference before it can be harvested. The first harvest from a cork tree can only occur at age 25.
Green, Eco-Friendly Benefits of Cork
Never harvested before its mature
Tree is not destroyed or damaged when harvested
Maximum benefits are achieved by using water-based finishes and adhesives
Bamboo as an Eco-Wood Choice
Bamboo is a rapidly renewing resource that matures in three years. There currently is no bamboo certified as meeting various environmental production or preservation standards, so it is important to try to learn as much as you can about the bamboo you are interested in before purchasing it.
Most bamboo is grown in Asia and the impact of transporting it to the United States market should be considered.
Green, Environmental Benefits of Bamboo
Regenerates without replanting
Requires minimal fertilization or pesticides
Other Hardwood Green Choices
Certain hardwoods are a great green flooring choice because of their natural, renewable, and recyclable properties. Not all hardwoods, however, are automatically environmentally friendly.
Hardwoods that are harvested without replanting the forest can lead to an adverse impact on the environment. There are a variety of programs that certify which hardwood products are environmentally friendly.
The key is to look for the certification label or materials to verify that a product meets green standards. The most common product certification programs are:
Forest Stewardship Council (FSC)
Scientific Certification Systems (SCS)
American Tree Farm System (ATFS)
Sustainable Forestry Initiative (SFI)
All these programs above certify wood from specially-managed forests.
Benefits of Certified Eco-Hardwood
Using hardwood flooring that has been certified as environmentally friendly will ensure that the wood is not "clear cut" (a forestry/logging practice in which most or all trees in a forest sector are cut down) but harvested in a sustainable fashion.
Only 4% of the nation's own native, old growth forests are still standing. The U.S. is the world's largest importer and consumer of timber woods and products.
Green Benefits of Hardwoods
Suitable for a "healthy home" environment
Forests are managed for replanting
Denver and Boulder Colorado's Alpine Flooring is happy to discuss this option with you for your eco-friendly home and living.
Simply send us an e-mail by clicking here or give us a call at 303-884-8020.