Hardwood is a natural, renewable and recyclable material. Not all hardwoods, however, are automatically environmentally sound choices. To make the decision easier, there are a variety of programs that certify which hardwood products are green. The most common product certification programs are the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC), Scientific Certification Systems (SCS), the American Tree Farm System (ATFS), and the Sustainable Forestry Initiative (SFI). All certify wood from sustainable managed forests.
When shopping for hardwood flooring, look for certification and understand that most of the flooring will be imported. Only 4% of the United States’ own native, old growth forests are still standing.
Green Benefits of Hardwood:
- Managed, sustainable, natural resource
- Low or no VOC emissions
- Can be finished using water-based products and installed with low-VOC adhesives