27 Mar 2008 02:03:19
Sustainable materials 'may cut carbon footprint'
Using sustainable building materials, such as reclaimed wood, can reduce the number of carbon emissions produced by a home improvement project, a Wimbledon couple has suggested.
Frederique and David Bailey told the Telegraph that they chose to use reclaimed oak when they decided to replace the floors in their 100-year-old house because they felt it had "character" and "we didn't feel we could justify deforesting the countryside just because we wanted a new floor."
The newspaper reported that while several tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions can be produced when all-new building materials are used, reclaimed products such as wood, metals and bricks may help to cut the environmental impact of a home improvement or construction project.
"While it is important to build new homes and extensions that are well-insulated and able to be heated and lit using as little energy as possible, most people aren't aware of the embodied energy that goes into producing building materials," said Keith Hall, the editor of Green Building magazine - formerly titled Building for a Future magazine.
The term embodied energy refers to the manufacturing of new building materials, including emissions produced during logging and transportation of trees.