The construction sector is a significant contributor to global greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. It accounts for approximately 40% of energy-related carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions and 11% of total GHG emissions worldwide. The emissions are caused by the energy used to extract, produce, transport, and install construction materials, as well as the energy used to operate buildings. The construction sector is expected to continue to grow, particularly in developing countries, which will increase GHG emissions. Therefore, reducing emissions from the construction sector is crucial to mitigating climate change and achieving global climate goals.
Hemp-based sustainable building materials have the potential to significantly contribute to the reduction of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from the construction sector. By replacing carbon-positive materials such as concrete, steel, brick, and insulation materials with carbon-negative hemp-based materials like hempcrete and hemp wool insulation, emissions can be reduced over the entire lifecycle of a building. Hemp-based materials can sequester carbon dioxide during their growth phase and store it throughout their service life as building materials. Additionally, hemp cultivation does not require herbicides, is robust, and requires less water, making it an environmentally friendly crop that can benefit soil health and biodiversity. By promoting and supporting the use of hemp-based building materials, we can reduce the carbon footprint of the construction sector and contribute to mitigating the impacts of climate change.
“We believe that the price of building materials should reflect their impact on the environment. Carbon-positive building materials should be more expensive than carbon-negative building materials, to incentivize the use of more sustainable options. We will work towards this by advocating for policies that require manufacturers of carbon-positive materials to compensate for their emissions, while supporting the development of carbon credits for manufacturers of carbon-negative materials, enabling them to sell credits and create a more level playing field.”
“Our approach is rooted in the principles of transparency, accountability, and collaboration. We will work with stakeholders across the value chain to ensure that our efforts are aligned and effective. We will also leverage our expertise and networks to raise awareness of the benefits of hemp-based building materials and drive demand for sustainable building practices.”