Oak Flooring – An Environmentally Sound Choice
Increasingly, as we all become more and more aware of the impact that our presence has on the environment, we are becoming more conscientious shoppers and buyers. For every aspect of our lives today where we have the chance to make a responsible buying decision. From fashion to washing up liquid, people are choosing the option that allows them to make a reduced impact on the environment.
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At Oak Floors Online, we agree with the ancient Indian proverb that “we do not inherit the earth from our ancestors, we borrow it from our children”. We are constantly striving to ensure that we provide our customers with the highest quality products that are sustainably sourced. We understand our customers’ commitment to looking after the environment and we share that commitment in our everyday activities as well as our sourcing practice.
Forest Stewardship Council
All of our oak flooring is FSC. FSC is the Forest Stewardship Council; it is an international, not for profit multi stakeholder organisation established to promote responsible management of the world’s forests. The FSC’s main tools for establishing responsible management of forests are standard setting, certification and labelling of forest products.
We source our oak flooring from forests and production factories that meet the requirements of the EU Timber Regulation and that operate responsibly. Meeting the requirements of the EU Timber Regulation ensures that the production factories meet the legalities of sustainability of timber harvesting and manufacture.
We proudly display the mark of the FSC, TTF and PEFC on our website. So our customers are assured of oak flooring products that have been responsibly and sustainably sourced. The TTF is the Timber Trade Federation and it exists to support the timber industry in delivering responsibly sourced, low carbon timber products.
Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification Schemes
PEFC stands for Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification Schemes. It is an international, non-profit organisation and is mainly composed of representatives of the forest product industries. The PEFC is the world’s leading forest certification system; an internationally recognised brand. The PEFC is fully committed to ensuring that the world’s forests are managed effectively from economic, environmental and social perspectives.
As a customer, trust marks found on the websites of companies that sustainably source their oak flooring are a reassuring sight. Something that many of our customers were surprised by when discussing sustainable products with us before ordering is the amount of energy that is required to produce other products such as cement, glass, steel and aluminium.
The Cost of Building Materials
To produce one tonne of cement, five times the amount of energy required to produce one tonne of timber is needed. One tonne of glass, fourteen times the amount of energy required to produce one tonne of timber is needed. A tonne of steel, twenty four times the amount of energy required to produce one tonne of timber is needed. For one tonne of aluminium. A HUGE up to 126 times the amount of energy required to produce one tonne of timber is needed.
These are very sobering figures for people when considering sustainability of products and energy sourced from the environment around us. We find that many of our customers feel significantly more confident and positive about their oak flooring purchase when they know the facts surrounding sustainability and production of their floor boards.
To further reassure our customers of our commitment to the environment, along with the other responsible suppliers in our industry; we appreciate the importance of being confident in your purchase, especially when it is such a significant investment in the improvement of your lifestyle. 91% of all TTF members purchases in 2014 were from sustainable sources and this is an indication of just how important it is to all of the members that we are responsible towards the environment when sourcing our timber.
There are 252 million cubic metres annual surplus of growth over harvest in northern Europe forests; another reassuring fact to help you to make a responsible purchase decision for your oak flooring.
Environmentally Sustainable – A Scientific Approach
Taking a slightly different approach to environmental responsibility, let’s take a look at the science of oak flooring. Using trees reduces greenhouse effects. Trees store CO2 from the air in their trunks and that CO2 later remains stored in your wood flooring.
Your high quality oak flooring will last you for a lifetime if properly maintained, unlike laminate or carpet. This means that significantly less energy is used in new material production for replacing your flooring.
Looking to maximise the efficiency of lifespan and environmental impact of your floor boards? Engineered oak flooring is more sustainable than solid oak flooring. Three times the number of engineered boards than solid boards can be made from the same piece of timber.
Looking towards your improved lifestyle with your sustainable and responsibly sourced flooring, you and the environment benefit – you and your family have improved air quality, as studied by the US Environmental Protection Agency Indoor and you are considering the environment through making a sustainably resourced purchase.
You will further benefit the environment by consuming less energy on your heating bills than with other flooring types. Wood has the best thermal insulation properties of any construction material.
Finally, if for any reason you decide that you no longer want to have oak flooring in your home, wooden flooring can be used to burn as fuel or can be recycled. Investing in oak flooring really is a full circle purchase from harvesting to recycling!
If you have any questions about how we source our timber or about the different types of oak flooring available. Please do get in touch and we will be happy to answer any questions that you have.
We have a full range of solid oak flooring and engineered oak flooring available and offer free samples. So you can see how your flooring will look in your home before committing to making a purchase. Order your free oak flooring sample here.