Will this material save forests? Water use is concerning. It’s here to stay so how do we make it truly sustainable? (This is NOT an endorsement of this company who raises some good points).
“The industrial hemp plant can be used in remediation of brownfields, as it has a higher nutrient uptake than any other agricultural crop. The industrial nature of this crop lends itself well to these types of applications as its products can be used for many industrial applications (as we will discuss later) other than consumption. In addition, the hemp plant can be an integral part of the reforestation projects that are necessary after large forest fires, or large clear cuts.”
Sustainable construction with hemp can help to heal our ecosystem.
The ecosystem is beginning to show many signs that the Earth is continually seeking to balance the many forces that are acting upon it. We can no longer deny the fact that our continual drive for economic growth has a drastic effect on the natural capital that our traditional economy is based upon. The current UK Government have highlighted the importance of environmentally sustainable agriculture, whilst in the US, many great leaders such as Thomas Jefferson and George Washington have sighted the importance of local agriculture and independence from foreign resources.
Unfortunately, as we continue to put pressure on the Earth to supply us with non-renewable materials, massive amounts of energy are released in ways that can detrimental the human existence. Although many of these changes may seem to be on a scale that is much too large for us to control, we are beginning to see the increasing role that humans have in a fragile, yet powerful ecosystem.
In recent years, we’ve seen dramatic weather changes, along with increased risk of storm, flood and fire. Natural disasters, such as those that are represented by what we have seen recently on the East Coast of America in the form of Hurricane Isabelle, and on the West Coast in the form of large forest fires, present a realistic view of the natural changes that are currently happening are currently influencing our ecosystem.
In addition, we are seeing human-induced occurrences influencing the ecosystem as well. Many of our water resources are exhibiting decreasing water quality and increased flood activity due to our creation of impervious surfaces and run off laden with toxic materials. As a result of this, we are seeing much of our soil, our valuable and usable land, being polluted washed away with increased amounts of erosion, and our agricultural fields being filled with sedimentation.
When our children can no longer safely sunbathe, or swim in rivers, there is evidence that the once-finely tuned relationship between humankind and nature is out of balance.
Green building can help repair environmental destruction
Although many natural disasters are beyond human intervention, we do have a direct influence on the environment with our methods of re-building after their occurrence. Development can actually repair environmental destruction with intelligent bioengineering and advanced ecological agriculture. Most importantly, we can heed the advice of our forefathers, while taking advantage of current technology and begin to make intelligent planning and engineering decisions as we continue to develop and grow into a society that can be can be economically and environmentally stable.
In this developing world, we must actively design communities that allow us to work with the environment, while utilizing the production of our building materials as an actual method of remediation and retrofitting of our current situation. By doing so, we can continue to grow at a rate that is sufficient to keep the economy strong, as well as allow our environment enough time to regenerate, even as we harvest agricultural resources that will replace synthetic materials. By using renewable materials that alleviate the need to extract those of which have taken years to form, we can release the many levels of pressure on the earth, before forces of nature release themselves. With this goal in mind, we are guided to design solutions that utilize renewable resources such as the industrial hemp plant.
In the development of a community plan we may explore how a renewable resource such as industrial hemp can be used in conjunction with innovative design to stabilize the economy, as it stabilizes the environment.
Growing hemp – The beginning of a sustainable community.
One of the first aspects in developing a new community, or renovating an existing community is to select a site that is suitable for sustainable development, which in many cases, requires the treatment of areas that have been previously impacted.
The industrial hemp plant can be used in remediation of brownfields, as it has a higher nutrient uptake than any other agricultural crop. The industrial nature of this crop lends itself well to these types of applications as its products can be used for many industrial applications (as we will discuss later) other than consumption. In addition, the hemp plant can be an integral part of the reforestation projects that are necessary after large forest fires, or large clear cuts.
Industrial hemp is excellent sown in a fallow field, as well as in crop rotation; the roots loosen soil, and fallen leaves return beneficial organic matter to the soil. In many cases industrial hemp can be planted as a means to stabilize soil, thus lessening the amount of valuable land that is lost to erosion. In addition, the fibers from the hemp plant can be arranged in a fiber matrix that can be secured to eroding slopes as erosion control blanketing and matting, as well as into fiber logs that help in the prevention of shoreline erosion.
The actual growth of the plant itself can alleviate the need for the millions of pounds of toxic fertilizer that contaminates our watersheds. In all of these ways, the growth of industrial hemp can help in the restoration of our watersheds and streams, as it is grown for usable materials that will be later used in the community design.
Cutting edge methods of managing stormwater using low impact development techniques such as bioretention and vegetated filter strips as a means reducing peak runoff rates, improving water quality, and replenishing aquifers, lend a whole new potential for the incorporation of the industrial hemp plant into our landscape.
Hemp building materials
Many traditional methods of buildings utilized local materials to construct buildings and sheds. By strengthening agricultural base we can return power back into the people who work American soil, thus decreasing the need for dependence on foreign resources. Industrial hemp holds the potential to strengthen growing communities on reservations and rural areas, as the fibers and hurd from the hemp plant can reinforce traditional adobe and fiber reinforced concrete mixtures. In addition, one acre of hemp produces as much cellulose fiber pulp as 4.1 acres of trees, resulting in an excellent material to be used in the composites industry.
Hemp resin can be used as an additive in the creation of biodegradable polymers that help to reduce the problems of waste disposal associated with toxic materials. Biodegradable polymers can potentially be combined with plant fibers to produce biodegradable Eco-Composite materials. The reinforcement of these polymers by means of vegetable fibers improves their mechanical properties and opens up new fields of application within the construction industry with the use of techniques such as film stacking, injection molding, and press consolidation.
A mixture of hemp fibers and hurds subjected to extreme heat and pressure can be molded into a completely biodegradable material that possesses excellent thermal and acoustic capabilities, as well as being fire-resistant and competitive in mechanical characteristics (tensile and compressive strength) with modern materials that are produced with a petrochemical base. Many of these qualities have been extensively tested with techniques such as electron microscopy an analysis of crystallographic changes that occur within the organic biopolymer that exists within the hempen matrix.
Research in the area of biological renewable materials has shown that the main building blocks of life &endash; carbohydrates, fats, proteins, and their derivatives &endash; could be substitute products from the modern non-renewable resources. (Almost everything made from a hydrocarbon can be produced from a renewable carbohydrate.) The advantage of using a renewable resource as the root of our building industry can be seen as we assess the life cycle of the material through its growth harvest and production, as well as in the examination of the gases that are released into the environment (or household) after construction.
Many modern materials produce harmful off-gas that silently infiltrates into our bodies during everyday activities. By using industrial hemp to manufacture non-toxic products, we can alleviate the release of many harmful chemicals into the atmosphere, as well as improve upon the overall health of the community. The cellulose from the hemp plant can be extruded into almost any product. By varying the heat, pressure, chemistry, and retention time with the extrusion process a range of fiber and cellular materials with multiple strength characteristics can be generated.
Products for the home industry that have been created using the industrial hemp plant include, but are not limited to: eco-composite paneling, fiberboard beams, roof shingles, carpets, biodegradable paints, curtains, and rugs.
FULL ARTICLE: https://cbdoiled.com/green-building-sustainable-construction-hemp-building-materials/
About the company:
CBDoiled.com (formerly Hemphasis.net) is a social enterprise, and we commit to donating a minimum of 51% of our profits to causes that help society to benefit from the cultivation of hemp and the production of natural hemp extracts.
We are more than a normal CBD business, we aim to do good by publishing helpful, accurate information and by offering high quality, whole plant hemp CBD products at prices everyone can afford.
Our priority is to inform and educate the public about the benefits of hemp and the importance of the human endocannabinoid system.
We supply ethically sourced whole plant cannabidiol (CBD) products at a fair price to make them easily available to those who need them.
We aim to prioritize social and ethical considerations in all aspects of running our business.
Our mission is to provide clarity about hemp and hemp extracts to enable consumers to make the best choices.