Timber's incredibly popular as a building material, and for good reason. It exudes a warm, comfortable feel, looks beautiful, offers all kinds of colour and textural options, is affordable and is dead easy to work with. Unfortunately, it hasn’t always been possible to ensure that the timber you’re using has been sustainably or responsibly logged.
Much of the timber we buy (some species more than others) comes from mysterious sources, and in most cases it’s assumed that it’s illegally logged. Depending on where it’s from, illegally logged timber may contribute significantly to the destruction of very delicate ecosystems and habitats for endangered animals.
Fortunately, these days it’s becoming easier to ensure that the timber you’re buying is from responsible, accountable sources.
Forest Stewardship Council certification
The Forest Stewardship Council is an organisation set up by environmentalists, social interest groups, indigenous peoples’ organisations, responsible retailers and leading forest management companies. Through their efforts, a certification scheme has been set up to allow people to check on the integrity of the sources of their timber.
When you’re buying timber, look for certification details and cross reference them on the FSC website to ensure that you know exactly what you’re buying.
The Greenpeace Good Wood Guide
In addition to the FSC program, Greenpeace has also established a website to allow people to find out more about different species of woods, and to help people to buy responsibly and sustainably produced timber.
Learn more about FSC certification and the Good Wood guide: