Wood buildings are the future of the sustainable environment
Wood buildings are the future of the sustainable environment, healthier lifestyles, and resilient communities.

Eco-advantages of building from wood

Wood is an ideal construction resource

What makes wood unique from concrete or steel?

The rapid cities' urbanization resulted in rising demand in the construction of commercial and real estate spaces. An increasing number of developing projects followed a moderate integration of different techniques, which offered cheaper construction materials and quicker completion periods. Approximately “11%” of greenhouse gas emissions are generated from the construction of traditional materials, such as concrete or steel, and intensive site activities; while, further building operations are responsible for “28%” of CO2 release (Roberts, 2020).

These numbers are the direct result of unethical construction techniques, toxic materials use, and irresponsible waste management. Cross- Laminated Timber (CLT) panels offered innovative technology and design solutions for eco-resilient buildings and communities. As a reliable alternative technology, CLT proved a high degree of strength, stability, and flexibility.

Wood is a naturally produced and the only renewable construction material that absorbs as well as stores greenhouse gas emissions. According to the University of Washington study, wood is an alternative construction material projected to reduce“26.5%” of global warming with its infrastructure facilities (Roberts, 2020).

Another study concluded on the wood capacity to positively contribute to the greenhouse gas emissions rate. Referring to the data: “Each cubic metre of wood sequestrates an average of 0.8 – 0.9 tonnes CO2. Using wood as a substitution for other materials it saves an additional 1.1 tonnes of CO2 that would have been emitted when using concrete.

This results in a total saving of approximately 2 tonnes CO2” (Van De Kuilen, Ceccotti, Xia, & He, 2011, p.1627). Based on these numbers, wood is a uniquely renewable construction resource that is projected to change the future environmental performance through its infrastructure facilities.

Numerous researches indicated a higher degree of wood embodied energy than steel and concrete. For example, “concrete and steel solutions contain around the same amounts of embodied CO2 (1,984 tonnes/m3), while an equivalent wood has less than a half that amount (727 tonnes/m3)” (Mallo & Espinoza, 2014, p. 7430).

Another factor was that wood showed less of the required energy during its manufacturing process, which resulted in the minimum level of CO2 disposed into the environment.

Wood`s comparative life cycle analysis, which included evaluation of environmental impacts during raw material extraction, transportation, and processing, demonstrates a lower degree of carbon dioxide distribution. Thus, wood is an ultimate alternative to materials, requiring fossil fuel for their production, substituted for buildings elements.

Raw materials extracted from damaged forests from insects or diseases are used for “high value-added use, as long as the mechanical properties of these materials are not compromised” (Mallo & Espinoza, 2014, p. 7430). This underlines the beneficial sides of using “lower-value raw material for a higher-value use, with wood products that continue to benefit the environment long after timber is harvested through carbon sequestration” (Salazar and Meil 2009; Wang et al. 2013). In addition, this technique contributed to a forest management to reduce a number of fire accidents (Salazar and Meil 2009).

Wood is ideal construction material.
Wood strength, flexibility, and stability make it ideal construction material.

As a result of CLT prefabricated house kits are a lower number of contractors, smaller cranes, and minimum to no waste. The CLT manufacturing process of individual pre-cut and assembly to a particular project's dimensions offers a small-scale construction site with a less intensive construction frequency, causing minimum job waste.

Wood is a uniquely renewable resource produced by nature and introduced to people as an ideal construction material. In the current development industry, concrete and steel are the predominant construction materials that showed their detrimental effects on the environment. With wood infrastructure, there is an open window to start positively reflecting on ways of building and occupying commercial and residential spaces.


• Mallo, M. F. L., & Espinoza, O. A. (2014). Outlook for cross-laminated timber in the United States. BioResources, 9(4), 7427-7443.
• Roberts, D. (2020, January 15). The hottest new thing in sustainable building is, uh, wood. Vox. https://www.vox.com/energy-and-environment/2020/1/15/21058051/climate-change-building-materials-mass-timber-cross-laminated-clt.
• Van De Kuilen, J. W. G., Ceccotti, A., Xia, Z., & He, M. (2011). Very tall wooden buildings with cross laminated timber. Procedia Engineering, 14, 1621-1628.

The Corte Bertesina Vicenza 2017 is truly unique projects, uniting this older Italian architecture with innovative solutions. This project signifies the regeneration of existing structures with CLT techniques to create a cultural and educational ecosystem. The combination of stones, glass, and CLT panels shaped the light structural look and technologically advanced space.