Introduction

‘Wood Recycling’ everything itself is explained in this one term and it has many benefits. Wood recycling may sound like a simple technique to you, but don’t forget that it has a deep meaning. Ultimately, in depth wood recycling will has a huge influence on the environment. You may hear an alternative to this word i.e. ‘Timber Recycling’. Recycling wood is the process of converting wood waste into valuable materials. Recyclability of a wood depends on ability it has in its original state. Wood recycling is an alternative to conventional waste disposal that can save wood and can help to lower environmental damage. When we add up wood waste with the concept of recycling it’s open to various opportunities for us. We all are aware of the fact that dumping waste can harm the environment. So recycling is one of the best ways to reduce wood waste. Also wood recycling helps protect the environment against the hazardous impact of improper waste disposal.

You may wonder if wood recycling is the new concept with the latest technology. But it’s not at all like that! Recycling wood, especially timber, is a sustainable management that was popularised in the early 1990s. As issues such as deforestation and climate change increase, it forces both wood suppliers and consumers to turn towards more sustainable practices. Which leads them to Recycling! 

Recycling wood is an environmentally friendly practice. Now let’s take a look at the 10 Benefits of Wood Recycling.

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10 Benefits of Recycling Wood

Benefits of recycling woods
Benefits of recycling woods

We all use wood or products from wood on daily basis. However, construction and demolition sectors are largely responsible for wood waste. Although industries, commercial, and household sectors also contribute to wood waste. Across the world, over 16 million tones of wood waste is created each year, and only 15% is recycled. It shows that Wood Recycling is not taken seriously. It’s high time for us to understand the importance of wood recycling, in order to help the environment.

Today I will talk about the Benefits of Wood Recycling. Through Wood Recycling we not only developed quality products but also saved trees!

1. New products from recycled wood 

New products from recycled wood
New products from recycled wood

Recycling wood obviously contributes to new products. Recycled wood from construction or other sectors is used to create building materials, horse poultry bedding, surface area, panel board, feedstock and many more. Plank of wood can be recycled to make furniture and also use in making wooden showpieces. Whereas we can also produce particleboards by recycling  wood waste from the Construction and Demolition (C&D) sector.

Wood Recycling is very common in countries such as Australia and New Zealand where supplies of old wooden structures are plentiful.Nowadays, wooden floorings are in huge demand. We love to have wooden floors in our surroundings. They appear to be beautiful and attractive! Also it helps to retain the heat. So, have you ever thought that if flooring is made from recycled waste wood.Then it will be not only eco-friendly but also pocket friendly too! They will definitely be cost effective. Clearly,no tree needs to be cut down to develop the same product, it is just re-using the old ones that others have discarded.

2. Recycled wood has less moisture content

Low moisture content
Low moisture content

Do you know the secret?

Recycled woods are actually stronger and durable than fresh wood! Doesn’t it make you curious to know how this is possible?

When we manufacture products from new wood ,before using it for manufacturing, wood will be placed in a drying kiln to dry the moisture inside of wood but it cannot completely remove at all. But when it comes to recycled wood, you can be sure that the moisture content is almost zero because it is already dry for a long time, thus making them very hard and strong. Recycled wood has the least moisture content about 20% as compared to virgin wood which is about 60% to 70%. This means for the same weight of wood you have to pay less when it comes to recycled wood. The added advantage is lower the moisture content means higher the durability. Higher durability implies the product will last for a longer time!

3. Contribute towards decreasing greenhouse gas emissions

Lower green house emissions
Lower green house emissions

Recycling wood is an important practice to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions which are the leading cause of climate change. When a wood is recycled, it is used in place of virgin wood in the manufacturing process, rather than being disposed of and managed as waste. Therefore, recycling, especially the recycling of wood waste, is beneficial in decreasing the release of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions.Recycling  wood also leads to a reduction in carbon footprint and lower environmental damage. You will be amazed to know that recycling one ton of wood can save up to 18,000,000 tons of energy.

4. Manure from wood waste

manure from wood recycling
manure from wood recycling

Lumber industry or you can call it the wood industry, is the major source of wooden waste created due to cutting and processing of the wood. This leads to formation of small chips and ashes.Fine chips of the wood and the powder can be mixed with other organic waste to produce organic manure. The bacteria help to convert wood waste to humus. Surely, wood waste will prove to be a rich source of nutrients, required for the plant’s growth. Also you don’t need to spend extra money separately for plant nutrients to enrich soil fertility.

5. Pocket friendly 

wood reuse is pocket friendly
wood reuse is pocket friendly

Wood Recycling can be an affordable cycle.

Recycling wood decreases the need to extract original resources. We don’t need to cut down new wood for getting a product. We simply need to reuse the old or disposed wood for making the same product and surely there will be no compromise with quality of products. With wood recycling we can reduce manufacturing cost. This leads to less energy consumption for manufacturing and transporting products. As a result, recycling wood material is less costly when compared to the original one. So no doubt that, recycling wood is best in all aspects.

6. Prevent fire hazard

You know that wood can easily catch fire. Waste wood lying around is hazardous. Wood can catch fire very easily. Wood lying around the surrounding area can increase the chances of an accidental fire. Especially,in public places it can be a major risk. So wood waste should be properly managed and recycled by experts using suitable strategies. In order to avoid fire hazard risk there should be separate space for dumping wood,so risk may be reduced. People should be aware about that dumping space specifically, so that wood waste can be regulated. It not only helps to keep a record but also it makes our work easy. By following such practice, we can segregate wood waste from other waste very easily.

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7. Power generation from recycled wood 

power generation from wood
power generation from wood

The wood ash and fine chips are used as the source of heat for the generation of the power using the environment friendly processes like gasification. Gasification is a process of converting biomass into gases. This includes the largest proportion of nitrogen (N2), carbon monoxide (CO), hydrogen (H2), and carbon dioxide (CO2). This is achieved by reacting the feedstock material, with high temperatures (typically >700 °C). Process is carried out without combustion. By controlling the amount of oxygen or steam present in the reaction. The resulting gas mixture is called syngas. It can also be called out as producer  gas. It is a fuel due to the flammability of the hydrogen (H2) and carbon monoxide(CO). Because of which the gas is largely composed. Power is derived from the subsequent combustion of the resultant gas. In fact it is considered to be a source of renewable energy as the gasified compounds are obtained from biomass.The power that could be generated using the waste wood can easily provide electricity to us.

8. Less waste in landfills

Recycling also means less waste going to landfill. This implies that less methane is generated. Methane is a greenhouse gas. It is 23 times more potent than carbon dioxide. It is produced when organic material decomposes under the anaerobic conditions present in landfills. In fact, landfills are the major source of methane. Recycling wood waste keeps organic material i.e wood out of the landfill and prevents methane generation which ultimately reduces carbon footprint. So, from next time whenever you see wood waste give a thought for recycling it. Wood can prove to be the best and convenient recycling material for many.

9. Fibreboard from wood waste 

Fibreboard from reclaimed wood
Fibreboard from reclaimed wood

A fiberboard used as a medium density wood. Commercially it has a huge supply. Specifically, fibreboards are used in furniture industries.Also a piece of heavy or dense fibreboard is used to make panel boards. Fibreboards are basically made from wood fibres. It is an intermediate product of a pulp mill used as input for a paper mill. In fact, fibreboards can be used in green building products. Fibreboard is a bio-based material, so to make it more stronger, the binding agents are used in fiberboard. To make it more eco-friendly the binding agents used in it are all natural products.Such as vegetable starch that has no added formaldehydes. So, no doubt fibreboards are the best way to recycle wood.

Last but not least! A very Important benefit…

10. Decrease deforestation

Save trees for sustainable future

“Save trees for sustainable future”

This benefit from recycling wood is quite obvious. The more you recycle the wood, the more you save the trees! Trees are green treasure. You guys are very well aware about the benefits that we get from trees. Trees play a crucial role in a healthy ecosystem as they reduce carbon footprint, filter greenhouse gases, give shelter, food and many more. They also play a very important role in carbon sequestration, offsetting carbon emissions. So, awareness is a key here, if you have more awareness and knowledge you can start recycling wood from today itself.  If we all aim to recycle wood waste, definitely we are going to save lots of trees.

Conclusion

Developing technology enables us to develop innovative approaches in a competitive environment. All the innovative approaches, from raw material to final product are important steps in getting the edge over the competition. Innovative thinking has important effects on the development of business models, especially when businesses are related to the environment. Nowadays,in the current scenario when innovation adds on with wood recycling technology, surely it will give a lot of benefits to us!

  • We all can get various products from recycled wood without compromising the quality of products.
  • Recycled wood can be used for making building materials, horse poultry bedding,surface area, panel board, feedstock and many more.
  • Planks of wood can be recycled to make furniture and also used in making wooden showpieces.
  • Particleboards and Fibreboard can be manufactured from wood waste which further leads them to manufacture more products that we use on a daily basis.
  • Recycle wood has less moisture content so most recycled woods are actually stronger and durable than new wood.
  • We can also prepare organic manure from wood waste, which can enrich soil fertility.
  • Recycling wood is cheaper than new wood. So products that we get from recycled wood are more cost effective.
  • Recycled wood can prevent fire hazard and can also be used in power generation.
  • Wood Recycling implies we are dumping less waste in landfills, which further reduces the harmful greenhouse effect.
  • Lastly, Recycling wood reduces deforestation and maintains greenery around you.

So start recycling wood from today itself, it will not only save the environment but also give you various opportunities to explore.

Prajakta bhujbal
Author

Prajakta Bhujbal is an enthusiastic BSc Environmental Science student. She is a passionate reader and willing to share her thoughts with you. Today, at a peak of climate change, she strongly believes that it's the responsibility of each and every one to show an honest gratitude towards our mother earth.Her blogs aim to teach people about how our environment can become more beautiful with innovative designs of ideas and technology.

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