SA Premier Jay Weatherill today witnessed testimony to the environmental and manufacturing opportunities for South Australia that can flow from innovative tall wood construction solutions.
The Premier was speaking at Building Greener Cities with Timber, an event highlighting the environmental benefits of building with sustainable timber.
“The South Australian government has been a leader in recognising the need to reduce carbon emissions,´ Mr Weatherill said. “Following our Carbon Neutral Adelaide partnership with the Adelaide City Council, the logical next step is to see how we can reduce emissions in the built environment. From what is being presented here today, there are clear opportunities to do this with timber-based technologies and potential to create manufacturing jobs at the same time.
“I will be speaking to our Minister for Manufacturing and Innovation, Kyam Maher, about working with the forest products industry to see how South Australia can best capitalise on the twin goals of reducing emissions and creating manufacturing jobs.”
Chief Executive Officer of the Australian Forest Products Association (AFPA), Mr Ross Hampton congratulated the Premier on his interest.
“It is fantastic to see the need for greener cities being prioritised in Adelaide,” Mr Hampton said. “There is increasing recognition of the environmental advantages of building with sustainable timber, as well as the benefits of versatility and speed of construction.”
“Australia is likely to see a surge in timber construction, including the use of Cross-Laminated Timber (CLT)1 , which creates real economic opportunities for this State, which is home to one of the premier softwood plantation regions in the country. The industry is looks forward to working further with the State Government to explore those opportunities to achieve wins for both the environment and for jobs.”
1 CLT is analogous to massive plywood. CLT is a structural building product that is both flexible and well-matched to prefabrication processes.
Building Greener Cities with Timber featured Mr Russell Acton, the architect of the tallest timber building in the world, Brock Commons Tallwood House in Canada.
Timber has the least carbon released during manufacture (approx. 0.2kg CO2/kg) compared to concrete (approx. 1.25kg CO2/kg), and overall as a material, has a net positive effect (carbon sequestration during tree growth plus ongoing carbon storage in timber products).2
2 Glover, J, 2001, ‘Which is Better? Steel, Concrete or Wood: A Comparison of Assessments on Three Building Materials in Common Use in the Housing Sector’, Department of Chemical Engineering, University of Sydney
Building Greener Cities with Timber also featured Planet Ark, XLam (first manufacturer of Cross Laminated Timber in Australia), DSquared Consulting; and Forest and Wood Products Australia.