When building a new home, you must consider your options for the foundation you want. While the standard concrete foundation may be the most common, permanent wood foundations offer a more environmentally friendly option. In this blog, we will discuss each foundation and the environmental impact of wood and concrete.
Concrete foundations are typically more expensive and require more labor to install. On the other hand, wood foundations are cheaper and less labor extensive. Before installation, wood foundations are treated and waterproofed to protect them against the weather. Wood may not be suitable for certain types of soil or climates that are high in moisture. Both types of foundations are sturdy and can be custom designed for your home.
Concrete is the most common building material in the world. While concrete is very durable and used for most buildings, it can damage the environment. Cement is one of the main ingredients in concrete, and it produces about 2.5 billion tons of carbon dioxide (CO2) a year. During the chemical process of making cement, limestone and clay are heated to 1,500 degrees Celsius, and high levels of CO2 are released.
The creation of concrete also uses a large amount of water. According to Nature Magazine, the concrete industry is responsible for 9 percent of all water withdrawals from industries. As the demand for concrete continues to rise, the water needed will also increase.
Wood is a renewable resource which means that it can be destroyed, and the forest around it would eventually absorb the emissions. Using wood foundations cuts down the amount of material used to half, and the weight of wood is 4-5 times less than concrete. If all new buildings were made with 50% wood, it would cut the CO2 emissions by 2 tons.
Trees absorb carbon dioxide as they grow, reducing the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere. High levels of CO2 have resulted in climate change. Utilizing renewable resources more often will have a positive impact on the climate.
In the long run, using wood foundations would positively impact the environment and reduce CO2 emissions. While concrete is a widely used product, wood has the same capabilities to make a stable foundation for your home. If you are considering a wood foundation, give us a call!