Eco-Friendly Building Materials: Lumber

Maintaining an eco-friendly practice is something we adhere to as often as possible. As a design and construction company in good standing with the U.S. Green Building Council, we take the responsibility of being ‘green’ seriously. Sourcing sustainable materials and implementing greener building practices is at the forefront of our minds when embarking on projects.

Lumber and wood products are primary resources that provide frame and structure to the home building process, often carried throughout to the flooring. With threats of deforestation and the increased carbon footprint that is inevitably imposed, one might wonder how the utilization of lumber can be constituted as a ‘green’ practice. And in some instances the scrutiny is absolutely valid. The truth of the matter is that other than steel there are few substitutes that offer the same structural integrity and ability to meet strict building codes.

However, eco-friendly lumber options do exist and have become increasingly easier to source and use in recent years. So if going green is important to a client in their home build or remodeling project, there are some viable options to consider.

Reclaimed Lumber and Wood Products are growing in popularity. Utilization of these products protect existing trees from being cut down, and greatly reduce the energy expenditure that is used to harvest and kiln-dry new lumber. Lumber that has been salvaged and repurposed from old barns and other structures is typically solid and dry making it less likely to move or warp. Reclaimed lumber and wood products tend to come with a higher price tag due to the labor involved in the salvage and milling process, but the price is absolutely worth it if one is aiming to keep their project eco-friendly.

Engineered Wood Products are another option to consider over solid wood materials. Often sourced from fast growing aspen trees, smaller trees, and other underutilized species; these materials avoid any impact on our Old Growth forests. These products are also generally easier to work with. Using standard power tools and basic skills, the process is somewhat less labor intensive, more efficient, and the end result is a better overall use of the wood. Below are some examples of engineered wood products:

FSC Certified

One of the number one things to look for when sourcing sustainable lumber and wood products is an authentic certification from The Forest Stewardship Council (FSC). An FSC certification tells an architect, builder or client that the lumber or wood product is made with environmentally responsible practices and materials, and certified by an independent third-party organization.


Smith Brothers is a unique team of construction craftsmen, architects, and interior designers. Since 1978, we stress the absolute highest levels of quality, performance, value and service in each and every project. Our award-winning design ideas, expertise, and collective experience allow us to provide the very best in what we do. For more information please contact us at 877-230-0333, (+01) 858-350-1445, or info@smithbrothersconstruction.com.

Building a “Green” Home with Style

Your home represents comfort and stability After a long day at work, returning home can ease your nerves and promises a sense of security You can…


Building at Sea Level

From the day that the Hotel Del Coronado was founded in 1888, the world knew that Coronado would be one of the most desirable beach towns in the…

Smith Brothers Construction house framing

Habitat for Humanity

Each year, millions of Americans move into the home of their dreams Five and a half years ago one family in particular was fortunate enough to do…