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eco-build

Timber Frame is the most ecological method of construction and contributes to zero emission new build homes.

Environmentally Friendly Construction Method

At ATFMMC we all take environmental issues seriously and carefully consider matters before we undertake any changes in our working practices or when we promote new components. It is essential that our planet earth enjoys the protection it deserves. We believe that if we all make a contribution and choose carefully the world’s rapidly disappearing resources can remain intact.

Clearly TIMBER plays a major role in the consumer driven society in which we live and we must all work towards preserving that precious commodity. When you browse this website you will understand WHY we choose wood and WHAT we are doing to protect our planet and preserve our forests.

One of the major problems we have is global warming, which is caused we are told, by excessive greenhouse gas emissions. The energy used in constructing, occupying and operating a building accounts for around 40% of all greenhouse gas emissions in Europe.

We can, and have, reduced this startling figure by using wood.

The responsible members of our industry in the main will only use wood, which has been supplied by a ‘chain of custody’ accredited importer. Basically this means that the wood we use is monitored from forest to factory.

The purpose of this is to ensure that only wood, which has come from a renewable source is used in manufacture. The reason is that we replace everything we use and not only do we replace used timber, the forests of Europe are growing each year by 252 million M3 this means that every year a new forest equivalent to an area similar to Cyprus is created, and this is 30 times more than the total annual UK use of harvested timber.

We know that trees take and store carbon from the atmosphere and produce oxygen, so the more trees we have the less greenhouse gasses to damage our world. The carbon extracted from the atmosphere is stored in the tree for life, even when used in buildings.

Embodied energy, which is the amount of energy required to manufacture a component adds to the 40% carbon emission mentioned earlier so the less embodied energy we need, the less carbon generated. Strength for strength concrete requires 5 times more embodied energy than wood and steel 6 times more.

Burning fuel to generate heat also produces carbon emission through poorly built property, so the better the build and the less fuel burned = less emissions. Because timber frame can be insulated to very high levels and the whole building is engineered to a known and acceptable level of emission, it is easier and cheaper to achieve the government demands than using traditional materials. The UK has some of the strictest regulations in the world and Timber Frame Construction meets and beats them all, as is the case throughout the world.

An alternative to burning fossil fuel is some form of micro generation system, which can be: Solar Water Heating; Biomass Boilers; Photo-Voltaic Converters; Heat Pumps and Fuel Cells; Hydroelectric or Wind-power. It is estimated that by 2030 in the UK alone, 14m tonnes of Carbon could be removed using the above systems. The cost? £2.2bn p/a. The question is “Who pays?” It is unlikely that the cost of the equipment would ever be repaid in savings and then there is the consideration of the embodied energy used to make environmental machinery. Planning rules also are quite stringent on these matters, so even if you could afford this type of contribution to the environment, you may not get permission. If David Cameron, Gordon Brown and even the Energy Minister Malcolm Wicks have had planning applications refused for wind turbines – it does not bode well for us mere mortals.

Each timber frame house saves 4 tonnes of carbon each year over a traditional system (Source UKTFA ). 50,000 Timber Framed houses would save 200,000 tonnes of carbon, the equivalent output of 70,000 x 1400cc cars driving 10,000 miles a year!