Materials and resources

Concrete, wood and steel structures compared - Timber Frame wins!
Materials and resources

How wood structures compare to steel and concrete for Carbon Footprint

A life cycle analysis of the three major materials used as structural support for buildings - wood v concrete v steel - embodied carbon. Wood, steel and concrete each have specific structural advantages, each with their own characteristics. The following is a life-cycle comparison conducted by the Athena Sustainable M…

Bathroom with refinished claw foot tub and barn board trim in a home c
Materials and resources

Finding environmentally friendly materials

Green materials don’t start and end with whether or not they are recyclable or contain recycled content. There are many factors to consider when searching for sustainable materials. All materials will have a history, the pros and cons of which will need to be weighed. Unfortunately there isn’t always an obvious right…

Pallet beds are trending but pallets can be toxic so be careful
Recycled and Reclaimed Materials

Is it safe to build beds or furniture with shipping pallets?

Everywhere we look online we see cool & beautiful furniture like beds & headboards made from recycled wood from shipping pallets - but could they be slowly poisoning us? Here's how to keep pallet furniture safe. Pallet Beds - cool but potentially dangerous! We've all seen these rustic shabby-chic pallet wood beds & he…

Gabion walls can be used for building homes
Concrete and masonry

Gabion Walls - what is a gabion cage & how to build with them?

Gabion cage walls can add thermal mass to homes without adding significantly to the carbon footprint of a home like concrete can. Gabion walls are retaining walls built by stacking stone in a gabion cage or gabion basket that can serve many purposes but are most often used to create tiered or leveled ground in gardens…

Low Carbon Concrete - Lowering the Carbon Footprint of Eco Homes
Concrete and masonry

Low-carbon concrete by CarbonCure Canada - lowering the carbon footprint of buildings

Producing cement for concrete results in high levels of CO2 output and is the third ranking cause of man-made CO2 in the world after transport & energy generation. Low-Carbon Concrete is needed for Building Green Homes. Low-carbon concrete - "green" cement at last?  One of the most essential and commonly-used buildin…

Hemp fibreboard and Hemp insulation - the Green Building choice
Wood and organic materials

Hemp building supplies

Hemp fibreboard cabinetry materials as an alternative to standard wood boards for kitchen cabinets - why it makes Eco-friendly sense. Hemp is a very sustainable construction material that is no longer just a fringe product; rather, it is becoming a more accessible mainstream building product, most notably as hemp-batt…

Patio stones with very low greenhouse gas emissions
Concrete and masonry

Reducing emissions with CO² cured-concrete

This type of concrete reduces the carbon emissions by 70%, fuel consumption by 30% and water use by 80%. A new cement block manufacturing process developed by an American company named Solidia Technologies® produces 40% fewer emissions during manufacturing than conventional concrete, resulting in a dramatically lower…

Recycled building materials
Recycled and Reclaimed Materials

Where to buy and sell used building materials

Get money for your old building material and Find used building materials on classified lists and through online brokers. When buildings are decommissioned there can be a lot of valuable materials that could be used again, but when buyers can’t find sellers, otherwise usable materials are being sent to a land fill. Th…

DLT Dowel Laminated Timber
Wood and organic materials

Two new options of mass timber panels

Two new types of mass timber panels similar to cross-laminated timber are hitting the North American construction market. The commercial construction sector has warmly embraced cross-laminated timber (CLT) in recent years, taking advantage of it as the base structure, but also as a design feature. The assembly of smal…

Choosing between OSB or Plywood for house sheathing for Roofs, Walls & Floors.
Wood and organic materials

Which is better, OSB or Plywood for Roofs, Walls & Floors?

Both Plywood & OSB have benefits & drawbacks, with much misinformation about Permeability - EcoHOME investigates the latest Data for new Code to help make the best choice. OSB v Plywood - Which is Best? Odds are, that if you pass a housing development of wood-framed houses, it will have OSB (oriented strand board) as…

Recycled barn beams and a refinished clawfoot bathtub
Recycled and Reclaimed Materials

Recycled & reclaimed materials

Recycled building materials can add character to a home while you save money and reduce building waste in landfills. The cost of every item we purchase is determined in part by the price of oil. This includes products that are in no way petroleum based, since material extraction, manufacturing and transportation will…