I was having a conversation with a group of homeowners the other day about the use of sustainable products in their homes. There was a lot of debate about what really makes a product sustainable, or green, so I asked the question….what is your definition of sustainable?
And as you can image I received a variety of answers. They then asked me what was my definition of sustainable and here is what I told them. “Sustainable is the practice of taking from the environment what you need for today but ensuring that it will be available for the generations that follow us”. When asked about an example of what I meant I used wood, and specifically wood counter tops, as a perfect example of sustainability. We walked through the process of harvesting a 20 year old tree to make an incredibly beautiful wood counter. I explained that at the same time that we harvest the tree we plant two trees in its place. Twenty years from now, and for the next generation, those two trees are ready to harvest and new trees can be planted in their place. And the cycle goes on and on always ensuring that there is wood available for generations to come.
Then I used the example of granite counter tops. And I explained that when you harvest granite there is now way to plant more granite for the next generations. In fact it could take mother earth 500,000 years to replace the granite that was just removed and then and there they understood what I meant by sustainable. There is no way to ensure that there that there will be granite available for future generations. It was one of those AH HA moments where you realize what it means to be sustainable. So if you are looking for a very sustainable counter top solution look no further than your favorite species of wood.
Your home will look better and you will feel better too.