Is wood flooring an earth-friendly product?

Sustainable building has been defined as building that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.

Having walked on hardwood floors here in Tampa that are over 100 years old, I would say that wood flooring is a sustainable material. The best thing about wood is that is beautiful and timeless. A homeowner is not likely to curse earlier residents for having installed wood floors, and feel the need to tear them out to cart them away to the landfill.

Over 10 million acres, almost 1% of African forests are lost every year. People desperate to feed their families hack out plots for small-scale farming. Hundreds of them go to the forest each day to work their pineapple and cocoa farms. In the Amazon and throughout South America, forests are burned for cattle grazing or large scale soybean farming. In Indonesia and elsewhere in southeast Asia, island forests are being cut or burned to make way for giant plantations of palm, the oil of which is used in food processing, cosmetics and other products.
We support sustainable forestry which promotes management practices that ensure long-term timber production while maintaining the ecological health and balance of the forest. Sustainable forestry is about prompt reforestation, protecting water quality, and wildlife habitat, maintaining cultural and historical sites, providing for recreational use, and generally respecting the forest ecosystem.

Woods produced through such practices are commercially more available now than ever before. On the 486 million acres of forestland in the United States classified as commercial, substantially more wood is added in new growth each year than is harvested. For hardwood species, from which most wood flooring is milled, 86 percent more wood is added annually in net growth than is removed through harvest.

At the recent National Wood Flooring Association’s yearly convention Chris spoke with many manufacturers about their products in his constant research for earth-friendly materials.  His experimentation with low-VOC finishes is continuous as new products constantly hit the market.

We are also committed to promoting brands of hardwood flooring that are certified by the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC), a non-profit organization devoted to encouraging the responsible management of the world’s forests. FSC sets high standards that ensure forestry is practiced in an environmentally responsible, socially beneficial, and economically viable way.

We can assist you in choosing the very greenest wood flooring material for your Tampa Bay home.