Green Floors: Bamboo and Cork
Nowadays, the Earth’s resources continue to be stressed due to factors such as unprecedented over-extraction as well as increasing natural disasters.
The World Resources Institute reports that “Global tree cover loss reached a record 29.7 million hectares (73.4 million acres) in 2016, according to new data from the University of Maryland released today on Global Forest Watch. The loss is 51 percent higher than the previous year, totaling an area about the size of New Zealand.”
The stats on tree loss due to uncontrolled deforestation and increase in recent global wildfires are shocking, and frankly depressing. The facts are making many potential homebuilders think twice when calling the shots on what types of materials to use in building their dream home.
Building Green – From the Floor Up
Thankfully, nowadays building homes that have a much smaller carbon footprint is getting easier and easier, especially as awareness over the need to make environmental friendly choices raises.
The more humans respect their beautiful planet and its surroundings, the smarter they build. Based in Denver, CO, here at Denver Dustless, we are proud to be part of a community that is increasingly environmentally aware.
As Denver’s premier hardwood supplier and installer, we take seriously our responsibility to provide sustainably sourced flooring. We firmly believe that stunning, high-quality flooring should not come at the price of ruining the earth.
For your next home build or remodel, why not install a floor that shows you care for the Earth, and at the same time, not compromise on beauty, cost, or preference? Sound too good to be true? It’s not!
Two Eco-Friendly Floors Worth Considering
Here at Denver Dustless, our hardwood floor options are endless. There is something for everybody. If you like to think ‘green’, then we have what you need. Check out these three ‘green’ wood floor options we offer. Who knows? Maybe one is really calling your name!
Natural Bamboo Flooring
First off, why opt for bamboo floors? What makes it so special? More specifically, what makes bamboo flooring an environmentally friendly choice?
Bamboo has extremely durable properties, while at the same time maintaining reasonable flexibility, making it a great material for a building supplies, especially flooring.
Did you know?
Bamboo is not actually a tree, but rather a regenerating grass, which allows it to grow much faster after being cut in comparison to hardwood trees. For example, bamboo shoots can reach maturity after 3 years. Depending on the species of hardwood, it may take 20 to 30 years for a new tree to reach maturity, making Bamboo an all-around smarter choice for the environment.
If you like the thought of using bamboo for your floors because of its properties and its eco-friendliness, but you don’t necessarily prefer its natural light color, no worries. Carbonized bamboo may be the option for you.
When you hear the term ‘carbonized’ you may automatically think that this process is about hardening the bamboo. In actuality though, natural bamboo is already very high on the Janka Scale, meaning it is already an extremely hard material. In fact, this carbonization process makes the bamboo 1/3 softer in comparison to natural bamboo, adding to its flexibility.
So what does carbonization really do to the bamboo? The answer is in its color. While outward applications of stains can wear over time because of foot traffic and UV rays from the sun, carbonized bamboo is bamboo that has been steamed, not stained.
The effect of the heat changes the color of the bamboo internally, not only externally, giving it darker hues depending on the length of the process. These hues are long lasting and can give your home the aesthetic appeal you just may be looking for if the natural lighter look isn’t for you.
The great thing about carbonized bamboo option is it can be tailored to your preference. Usually to compensate for its loss of rigidity during this process, a surface treatment is done so it can withstand normal foot traffic the same way natural bamboo does.
Install an Eco-Friendly Hardwood Floor
Carbon Footprint-Friendly Cork Flooring
What makes cork a ‘green’ choice?
Cork is taken from the bark of the tree, meaning the tree is stripped of its bark but continues living, thus making it a renewable and sustainable resource.
Cork is a unique, eco-friendly option to walk on, not to mention a comfortable option. Cork is obviously a softer material, meaning more give under your feet. Initially, this may come as concern because it is more susceptible to dents and such.
Surprisingly though, when cork is dented from children and animal traffic, the texture of cork is very forgiving, making such small dents very difficult to notice. These small indentations will spring back up over time, making it unique in comparison to other floor types that dent more visibly permanently.
Another bonus is that cork is anti-static! That means that pet dander, dust, hair, pollen, and other allergy-causing substances will not stubbornly stick to cork flooring. That equates to a floor that is fast and easy to clean as well as cleaner, healthier indoor air.
Here in Colorado, one other factor to consider is the warmth of your floor. Cork is warmer than many floors which makes it much more inviting in the cold Colorado winters.
This hypoallergenic and antimicrobial material is easy to maintain (simple sweeping and vacuuming will do!) and can be refinished, though initially will require a waterproof sealant. Like most wood products, cork fades from intense UV rays, but as mentioned earlier, its ease of maintenance balances out this common concern.
Another advantage of cork is its insulating properties, which may have a positive effect on your bills at the end of the month. Efficient for the Earth, and your bank account! Win/win.
Opt for 'Green' Flooring
Well, which environmentally friendly flooring choice will you make?
We hope that after reading this, you have a broader idea of what eco-friendly option is best for your place, whether it be natural bamboo, carbonized bamboo, or cork. In our opinion, you can’t go wrong with any of these planet-saving options!