Client News

The Ledger: Brad Kubin: Buy Wood Near Home

Monday, October 07, 2013

There is plenty of durable, high-quality timber in the Southeastern region of our country. As the owner of a business that designs superior wood furniture and millwork for our customers, I appreciate forest programs that support the responsible harvesting of timber, ensuring our trees will remain a renewable resource for the future.

Many people don’t know that the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design building certification program limits the use of “green” wood by awarding sustainable credits only to those who use timber certified by the Forest Stewardship Council.

Policies like this not only exclude other credible forest certification programs, such as the Sustainable Forestry Initiative and the American Tree Farm System, but they create a monopoly in the marketplace by endorsing one type of certified wood: Forest Stewardship Council.

Additionally, 90 percent of FSC-certified timber is found in foreign countries, which have different sets of standards for how the program is used. Misguided building programs, such as LEED, discourage customers from purchasing domestic wood, sending our business overseas.

One hundred percent of the materials we use at Wood Foundry are sourced from local suppliers when possible. For species of lumber not available locally, we obtain material from regional suppliers who practice sustainable forestry.

I’m not the only one who believes that buying locally is better for everyone. The Florida Legislature passed House Bill 269, which was recently signed into law. This new legislation opens up the timber market in Florida’s public construction projects, ensuring that our state agencies use Florida timber first — as long as it is equal in price and quality.

This means that our tax dollars will be spent on local wood, which helps drive Florida’s economy. We should continue to support measures that increase customer access for our homegrown businesses.

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