Australians are becoming increasingly concerned about climate change and other environmental issues. As a result, building and renovating homes sustainably is becoming less of an option and more of an imperative.
One of the best ways to build sustainably is to build for energy efficiency. When it comes to saving energy, doors and windows are critical. Efficient doors and windows will help keep buildings warm in the winter and cool in the summer without requiring massive amounts of energy.
Making sure you’ve got modern, energy efficient windows and doors is critical, but sustainability doesn’t stop there. If you want to minimise the environmental impact of your building, you should be sure that the materials used in your doors and windows are sustainable choices as well.
The Australian Government has some of the world’s best sustainable forest management standards, so you can be sure that as long as your timber is local, it’s likely to be sustainable.
Let’s take a look at some amazing local and sustainable timber choices you can use to create stylish and energy-efficient doors and windows:
Blackbutt is a native coastal species that dominates the eastern reaches of New South Wales. One of Australia’s most prominent commercial species, Blackbutt is a favourite for sustainable builders because of the high quality of the timber and the fact that it can be regrown reliably and quickly.
Its unique name comes from the dark appearance of its trunks after bushfires, but the damage is usually cosmetic — Blackbutt is one of just seven timber species recognised as bushfire-resistant. With pale brown heartwood and very pale brown sapwood, Blackbutt is exceptionally versatile and eye-catching.
There are a handful of different native Australian trees that share the name spotted gum, but they all produce beautiful, naturally strong timber. Each spotted gum species shares straight, slender trunks that have smooth bark which sheds in patches. This shedding process is what leaves the trees with their signature spotted pattern.
A popular choice for architects and designers because of its wide range of colours and “fiddleback” texture, spotted gum can be used to create distinctive, visually appealing doors and windows. The heartwood ranges from light to dark red-brown, and the sapwood is white or light brown.
Sustainability is the key to securing a bright future, and energy-efficient design is an important part of that effort. But to really maximise your impact, you should combine sustainable design with local timber.
Not only is local timber one of the best choices for sustainability and performance, it also looks tremendously sharp and helps you show off a little Aussie pride.
Learn more about what kinds of amazing sustainable timbers are available for your next project. Read our new information sheet.