Building new homes from timber could save about 10 per cent of the world’s carbon budget, which is needed to limit global warming to 2 degrees, according to a new study from the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research.
This research demonstrates that increasing the use of timber and fibre is critical to fighting climate change and that we need more sustainable forestry, CEO of the Victorian Forest Products Association (VFPA) Deb Kerr said today.
The study found that housing 90 per cent of the world’s growing urban population in new timber mid-rise buildings could save 106 gigatonnes of CO2 by 2100.
“Latest estimates show that Victoria’s population will grow significantly by 2056: 47 per cent in the regions and 84 per cent in metropolitan Melbourne. That means nine million people would call Melbourne home in the coming 34 years – which also means we need to build a lot of houses in the state. With the right policies in place, we can ensure that most of these new houses are built with wood. And the icing on the cake will be to build them with wood grown and processed in Victoria.”
“Wood is an amazing product that stores carbon for its lifetime. And it is 100% renewable. We need to urgently plant more trees and implement wood encouragement policies, allowing a greater take-up in timber construction,” Ms Kerr continued.
“Timber and fibre are a major part of the climate change solution, and governments need to recognise that. The world wants timber and fibre, and the trees that produce it lock away carbon. We can help solve two problems by growing more trees and engaging in sustainable forestry – providing much-needed essential products and fighting climate change,” Ms Kerr concluded.