Do you know where your firewood comes from?
And no, “I picked it up at the petrol station” isn’t an acceptable answer.
Where did it really come from? Which country was it grown in? When was it chopped and processed? Who brought it to the UK – and how?
In 2010 a survey by the WWF – the World Wildlife Fund – found that half of British consumers weren’t aware their wood could come from unsustainable, sometimes even illegal sources.
While it’s unlikely that a bag of logs from a petrol station forecourt would have been sourced illegally, there are definite knowledge gaps when it comes to buying wood.
But knowing the providence of your wood, and building a closer relationship to a supplier, has real benefits.
Here’s what you need to know.
There’s a smaller carbon footprint
These days, the logistics behind importing wood from abroad are much less of a hassle than they used to be, which is why most of the UK’s kiln dried logs come from Europe.
But while there may be some benefits to bringing it in from abroad, increasing awareness of and concern about the environmental impact of the purchases we make means that people are wanting to look a bit closer to home.
After all, transporting lorry loads of wood from the far reaches of the European continent – thousands of miles away – to be burned in the UK has a much higher carbon footprint than using ones grown locally.
You’re helping UK business
Not only is the carbon footprint lower, but you’re often putting more money into the UK economy if you buy from source, or from a supplier who source their wood in the UK.
In the context of the shifting political landscape of the day, many people feel drawn to shopping more locally, supporting British business, and keeping our money that little bit closer.
You can see further up the chain
When you buy closer to the source, not only can you find information about where your wood is grown, but you can understand the relationships between your supplier and their suppliers. You can learn about the estates, the woodland management companies, the delivery companies, and others who are involved in the process of getting the wood from the trees to your fireplace.
At Logwise we have nurtured these relationships over twenty years in the industry. We work with the companies and organisations who are trustworthy, and who demonstrate a real and ongoing concern about the environmental impact and sustainability of their work.
Because buying firewood from an unsustainable source is not the right thing to do.
You know what’s involved in the process
At Logwise we use our waste wood to fuel the biomass boilers that kiln dry our logs. Solar panels provide our electricity, and we help to offset the carbon we use through a partnership with the Woodland Trust.
This partnership sees British trees replanted in a carbon offset mechanism, so when you buy from us, you are helping to make the UK more green. Over 500,000 trees have been planted so far.
When buying from a re-seller you lose this contact with the wood. You lose the opportunity to find out where it came from, and to understand how your purchase impacts the world. And when we’re talking about something so intimately connected with nature as logs and trees, it’s really important to keep this connection.