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LET'S BUILD MORE WITH WOOD:the message of the Club du Bois meeting

29.10.2015

LET'S BUILD MORE WITH WOOD:the message of the Club du Bois meeting

EOS in joint collaboration with the European Panel Federation (EPF)
and the European Confederation of Woodworking Industries (CEI-Bois), supported by the European Federation of the Parquet Industry (FEP), organised the 2nd Club du Bois meeting under the chairwomanship of Mrs Maria Noichl, MEP, on 21st October 2015 at the European Parliament in Brussels.
In Strasbourg earlier in the year, the forum had asked itself the questions: How can we meet our Climate Goals? How can we meet our Renewable Energy Goals? How can we meet our Industrial & Employment Goals? Quite simply the answer lay in one statement:Build More With Wood!

The importance of increasing the use of wood in construction was stessed by Mr David Hopkins,  Executive Director, Wood for Good.
Mr Hopkins started his presentation by explaining that the bio-economy comprises the part of the economy that is using renewable biological resources to produce food, materials, energy, etc. It is thus an essential alternative to the dangers of fossil-based economy, providing major opportunities for innovation, jobs, growth.

In particular Mr Hopkins called that:

  • Timber and wood products must be part of the EU bio economy strategy;
  • Measures for promoting building with wood should be included in the European bio-economy plans - there is no building we cannot make from timber;
  • Rather than a Renewable Energy Strategy, a Renewable Material Strategy should be launched by the EU Institutions;
  • Resource efficiency starts from recyclability: recyclable product should always be the first option in Green Public Procurement;

Mr Hopkins ended his speech with a quote of the well-known architect Michael Green: ‘Wood is the most advanced material that we can build with. The Earth grows our food. The Earth can grow our homes. It’s an ethical change we have to go through.’

Examples of the most significant wood buildings in terms of architecture and reduction of CO2 - were presented by Mr Stefan Rubner, Winner of the world environmental prize Solar Decathlon 2014
Indeed, with Rhome for DenCity, the energy-efficient house, Mr Rubner won the Solar Decathlon 2014 and as such Italy became world champion in Sustainable Architecture. The winning card was the mix of technologies and practices that have led geo-coded specific consumption and energy production at optimum levels.

During the Club du Bois meeting, mr Rubner emphasised that increasing the use of wood in buildings would significantly reduce the climate change impact. Building with wood not only stores CO2, but also significantly reduces the construction time.

Throughout the day there were very active question and answer sessions. The engagement of the participants, especially the MEPs, was a great encouragement to the sector. The clear conclusion of the day was that Parliament, the EU policymakers and the Wood-Working Industries should work together to support:

  1. Greater use of wood in construction (“Wood First”)

  2. Intelligent use of post-consumer wood according to waste hierarchy principles (“Urban Forest”)

  3. Wood as a valuable resource for Industry, Employment, and the prevention of Climate Change (“Responsible Industry”)

SAVE THE DATE: The next Club du Bois meeting will be held in Brussels on 19 and 20 April 2016