One will never argue the benefits of trees in residential, commercial, and industrial areas. They give fresh air, natural fruits, and wood for construction. Trees in commercial buildings especially in highly urbanized cities also undergo cutting and life cycle especially when they are needed to cut down for safety purposes or they have just died and pose hazards. Tree removal service in Baton Rouge and other areas are in-demand, but where do these trees go after being cut?
According to the USDA Forest Service, there is an estimation of 46 million tons of wood fall in the United States‘ Urban places. The majority of this number is landfilled, burned, or chipped. Only less than 10 percent of wood that ends in solid waste is recycled. On the ground, there is a big volume of mulch and wood chips. In fact, too many to use. Mulch, specifically, decays faster and releases carbon into the environment. Mulch and wood chips are the two most prevalent byproducts of Urban Wood. However, there are still many products that are made out of urban wood including premium furniture, lumber, biochar, and bioenergy. In addition, there are many efforts to treat fallen or cut urban woods as a valuable resource material rather than a waste. For instance, reforestation hubs are made to make tree planting efforts and their maintenance. It is a model that holistically supports the life cycle management of urban trees and forests. Reforestation hubs are slowly becoming more popular; from Baltimore city to New York, Eugene, Pittsburg, and Philadelphia. Moreover, municipal members and new state chapters of the organization Urban Wood Network are helping to make efforts in wood utilization infrastructure.
Below are the key players in the urban wood economy:
- Local government – local government units provide the infrastructure for the collection and reuse of these woods as well as the laws and policies that need to be followed.
- Tree companies – these companies are really the boot on the ground as they perform the labor procedure; from preparing equipment, cutting the trees to disposing of them.
- Private processor companies – these companies buy the raw material and process the logs; transforming trees from waste material into a value-added goods. They then sell these logs as wooden products of different sorts.
- Commerical buyers – this group includes furniture companies, architects, energy producers, farmers, and more. They are an important element in reusing wood.
- Residential consumers – aside from using the end products, residents can also advocate for policy changes for the environment.
There should be a recognition of how big an opportunity urban wood can be. Instead of treating them as waste, there are effective processes we can do to reuse them and take advantage of them for a longer duration. The thing is, creating new programs that could instigate such initiatives can be costly and strenuous. So long as the federal and local government units, as well as other constituents, would make efforts in reusing cut and fallen trees.