Wood has many advantages over other materials for building large construction projects. It is the only renewable building material for large construction projects, and requires less energy to produce. According to one study, the lifecycle of steel and concrete results in 26 percent to 31 percent more greenhouse gas emissions than wood.
Wood has a long lifespan, as long as it has been well maintained and protected against moisture damage and insects such as carpenter ants. Wood also weighs less than concrete, so it is ideal for light frame construction. Because of these advantages, architects are starting to re-acquire the knowledge for timber construction and organizations are promoting the use of wood for house framing, renovating, and some commercial applications.
Statistics show that wood frame buildings are highly durable. The risk of fire in a wood framed building is no greater than those built with other structural materials. As long as the wood structure is properly protected from the elements, a wood structure is considered to be highly-durable.
Innovative building practices and new wood products on the market are helping to increase the use of wood in building projects. An additional benefit of wood products is the ability to use smaller pieces that would otherwise be considered waste pieces. This reduces the burden on landfills and forests alike.
Because of the many benefits of using wood for building construction, more and more architects are pushing for it to be used as a main building material. Because it is a renewal resource, it is far more environmentally friendly than other frequently used types of building supplies, plus it is highly durable.