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Stories Of Sustainability: Wood Is Good


The following was an RV Industry Association (RVIA) News & Insights guest article from Erin Curtis, Genesis Products VP of marketing & development.

Photos courtesy of RVIA.

In the RV industry, protecting our natural environment connects directly to our customers’ love of the outdoors. In honor of Earth Day, we’re taking a closer look at one of our most common construction materials: wood.

Did you know that wood and wood-based products are the only climate positive building materials available? It’s true. This is because they store more carbon than is released in their production and use, helping to reduce greenhouse gases in the atmosphere.

The term “climate positive” describes any activity that goes beyond achieving net-zero carbon emissions, benefiting the environment by removing additional carbon dioxide from the atmosphere.

Here’s how it works:

    • Wood sourced from managed forests help support healthy forest ecosystems
        • Wood is the only material considered “infinitely renewable”
    • Wood is Nature’s perfect carbon sink
        • Trees absorb CO2 from the atmosphere as they grow.
        • Half the chemical makeup of wood is naturally captured carbon.
        • This carbon isn’t released into the atmosphere until it decomposes or burns.
    • By building with wood, we keep that carbon stored for longer.

Here’s the interesting part: We can exponentially increase the benefits of building with wood when we use composite wood (MDF, particleboard, plywood) versus hardwood.

Composite wood fun facts:

    • Composite wood panels begin life as a recycled product (and help use over 99% of every harvested tree)
    • Composite wood has a carbon footprint of negative 1,290 kgs per cubic meter
    • Composite wood sequesters two times the carbon vs hardwood
    • An MDF panel sequesters 43 pounds of carbon and a particleboard panel sequesters 40 pounds of carbon

The more composite wood we use, the more carbon we keep out of Earth’s atmosphere.

Application opportunity: Cabinets and cabinet doors can be up to 80% of an RVs interior square footage. Utilizing composite wood in cabinetry applications can help maximize the amount of carbon sequestered in each unit.  Plus, there are a range of durable laminates and finishes that can transform your interiors and achieve higher grades of consistency and elevated looks, from super mattte to high gloss.

Read the full article on RVIA’s website here.

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