As one of the most ethical timber suppliers in Brisbane, it is no surprise to those who know us that we only sell sustainable, ethically sourced timber. We have a firm commitment to promoting responsible forestry, for our generation and future generations of Australians.
Why is Responsible Forestry so Important?
In Australia, we often take trees for granted because we have so many of them, but we need to sustain our resources for two reasons: to keep timber available for future generations and to keep from damaging our environment.
When responsible forestry and harvesting are practised, every tree that is taken down is replanted. Trees are allowed to grow to maturity and the cycle is repeated, over and over, with no loss of trees or forest land.
The other reason is the environment. When trees are responsibly and ethically harvested, they store carbon and release oxygen into the environment. This produces a negative “carbon footprint” and reduces the amount of “greenhouse gases” in the environment.
Responsible Forestry and the Environment
To fully understand the importance of ethical and responsible forestry, you need to know how trees “work.” On a superficial level, the biology is easy. Our atmosphere contains oxygen and carbon dioxide, or CO2. When we breathe, we assimilate oxygen and exhale CO2. When trees “breathe,” they assimilate CO2 and “exhale” oxygen.
This means trees benefit humans and all animals, birds, etc in two ways. They provide oxygen and they store carbon. When a tree “inhales” CO2, it turns the carbon into timber. All of the timber in a tree is carbon that would have otherwise been in our environment. The fact that timber is useful for building is an added benefit.
Trees are the most active at storing carbon during their peak growing years. Some trees gain “maturity” between 10-15 years, while others can take between 20-30 years. During that time, they are assimilating and storing carbon at their fastest rates. When trees are allowed to reach maturity, they have done their peak service to the environment.
When mature trees are harvested, the land is replanted with new trees. They start growing almost immediately and the cycle begins anew.
The Alternative: Deforestation
Deforestation or chopping down trees without replacing them, as in the “clearing of land,” is a huge problem for mankind. According to information released on 3rd September 2015 by researchers from Yale University in the US, there are three trillion trees (3,000,000,000,000) on earth. Researchers used satellite pictures and a massive collection of ground survey data to come upon with this estimate.
This works out to approximately 420 trees for every person on the planet. However, approximately 15 billion trees are being chopped down each year with only 5 billion being replanted. This represents a net loss of 10 billion trees every year.
In December 2014, it was estimated by the conservation group Greenpeace that humans have already destroyed 75% of the world’s available forests. This has created an imbalance that is raising the level of carbon in our atmosphere and decreasing the amount of oxygen in our air.
Negative Effects of Deforestation
When trees are not ethically harvested and replanted, it contributes to even more deforestation. Besides the harm to the carbon/oxygen environment and subsequent contribution to global warming, there are more consequences to deforestation.
The roots of trees tend to hold soil down and make it moist. Land that has been cleared of trees tends to be more susceptible to erosion because the soil dries out and is not held down to the ground. It also loses its ability to absorb moisture due to excessive sun and heat exposure. This makes the land more susceptible to flooding, which then carries much of the remaining soil away.
If you care about animals, this is important: 70% of the earth’s animal and plant species live in forests. When their habitat is destroyed, they die. In Australia, deforestation has affected many indigenous people.
Call Narangba Timbers Today
When you use any of our timber products, you are actually helping the environment because ethically sourced timber encourages the transformation of more carbon into timber. To learn more, call us today: (07) 3888 1293.