The measurement of how sustainable a building project is shouldn’t necessarily be limited to the end build. The construction process itself should also be open to scrutiny with regards to its environmental credentials. 

With the site hoarding often regarded only as a disposable commodity, the quality and origin of the materials used in their construction are frequently overlooked. Yet, in order to achieve a fully sustainable building project, it’s just as important to consider the provenance of the materials used for your site hoardings as it is for your final building design.

This is particularly true for timber, as not doing so could put you in breach of the legal requirements laid out in the Government’s Timber Procurement Policy.

Greenpeace has noted that in the UK, “the construction industry is the biggest consumer of timber, which is why it is vital for contractors, architects and builders to source timber from environmentally and socially responsible sources such as those certified by the Forest Stewardship Council.”[1]

The leading environmental charity, which regularly chooses to use our SMARTPLY OSB panels for its field at Glastonbury Festival, also endorses OSB as the greener alternative to the more popular choice for hoarding material – Plywood.

It can be a challenge to trace the real origins of the component timber that makes up tropical plywood in the UK market. This is down to the fact that around 50% of imported plywood comes from China, where the supply chains of timber manufacturers lack the same transparency and accountability as in the EU. As a result, there is an increased chance of Chinese plywood being sourced via destructive logging practices in threatened forests.

SMARTPLY SITEPROTECT – our pre-primed, time saving site hoarding solution - can help you win those all-important sustainability ‘brownie points’ for your construction sites. Manufactured within the EU and accredited by the FSC, the OSB panels offer you complete assurance of legality and visibility of each link in the supply chain – from forest to factory!

As an OSB, SITEPROTECT is made from the thinning’s of fast-growing pine and spruce trees from our very own forests in the Republic of Ireland. Pre-primed with a heavy-duty polymer, the panels only require painting and installing on site as per guidelines. So, it’s not only the environment you’re saving with SITEPROTECT, it’s your time as well.

The panels also fit within the aims of the World Wildlife Fund’s forests campaign to cut out the trade of illegal and unsustainable timber. The conservation group is working with businesses across industry sectors in order to stop the procurement of wood from poorly managed forests and aims to move towards a fully sustainable timber market in the UK by 2020.[2]

To meet this ambitious goal, the construction industry has an important role to play. Whether you’re an architect or specifier, stockist or contractor, checking the quality and provenance of your timber is essential. This should be as true for site hoarding as it is for the structural frame. Only when ethically sourced, sustainable timber is used across the full gamut of construction methods, structures and processes can the construction sector help prevent the deforestation of the world’s forests.

[1] https://www.greenpeace.org.uk/what-we-do/forests/alternatives-to-illegal-and-unsustainable-plywood/

[2] https://www.wwf.org.uk/what-we-do/projects/forests-campaign-businesses

Posted Thursday 15th February 2018