The landmark NZ Wood programme was officially launched at Parliament recently by Minister of Forestry Jim Anderton.
The launch kicks off the first promotional phase of NZ Wood — to present the environmental credentials of forests and wood to the building and design sector — and coincides with the launch of the NZ Wood web site, www.nzwood.co.nz.
NZ Wood brings together the wood and forestry industries behind the common goals of increased wood consumption and greater awareness of the environmental credentials of wood and forests, particularly in the fight against climate change.
NZ Wood is managed by the wood and forest sectors, and co-funded by industry and government. The budget for NZ Wood is approximately $2 million per year for three years.
Wood Council of New Zealand (Woodco) chairman Doug Ducker says wood has great environmental credentials.
Material of the future
“It is the building material of the future. Sustainability is only going to become even more important to consumer choices and policy,” he says.
“Wood and forests are great partners for sustainability, and NZ Wood means to take advantage of these opportunities.
“The recent government announcement that government buildings will need a wood design option illustrates the kind of opportunities awaiting wood.
“NZ Wood will not just promote wood but provide information, resources and tools for those designing and building with wood,” Mr Ducker says.
NZ Wood is a multi-dimensional development programme, involving promotion and advertising, research, web site and information channels, an NZ Wood brand, design resources and training initiatives.
A key component of the NZ Wood programme is a “resources” web site that will provide information for those designing and building with wood. The site will be launched in mid-2008.
“We New Zealanders have a great tradition of building our homes in wood, and NZ Wood wants to keep it that way. There are also huge opportunities for wood in non- residential buildings, and this will be a focus for NZ Wood,” Mr Ducker says.
More than 90% of New Zealand homes are built in wood. However, a recent BRANZ report estimates that we could be using 20% to 30% more wood in non-residential buildings.
The launch, as with previous road shows and industry events, was well attended by representatives from across the forestry and wood industry, as well as engineers, architects, designers, builders, politicians and government officials.
“It’s great to see such a high level of support for the programme, and this was reflected in the number of different groups from across the industry who attended the parliamentary launch.”
The NZ Wood road show, which wound up earlier this month, attracted 700 wood and forestry people across 15 centres.
NZ Wood is supported by Woodco, New Zealand Forest Owners Association, Wood Processors Association, Douglas-fir Association, New Zealand Farm Forestry Association, New Zealand Pine Manufacturer’s Association, Forest Industry Contractors Association, the Timber Design Society and the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry.