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The Best Sustainable Wood Sources for Your DIY Projects

The Best Sustainable Wood Sources for Your DIY Projects

Rhodri Evans |

In recent years, the concept of sustainability has gained increasing attention in various industries, including the world of woodworking. As eco-consciousness among DIY enthusiasts continues to grow, so does the trend toward using sustainable wood in projects. The reason for this is twofold - not only is sustainable wood beneficial for our environment, helping protect our forests and support vital ecosystems, it also tends to be more durable and long-lasting, ensuring your DIY projects stand the test of time.

Understanding Sustainable Wood

What is Sustainable Wood?

Sustainable wood is wood that has been harvested responsibly, in a way that maintains the health and biodiversity of the forest it comes from. Responsible forestry practices, along with certification systems such as the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) and the Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification (PEFC), are crucial in determining whether a source of wood is sustainable.

Moreover, sustainable wood contributes significantly to the process of carbon sequestration. This is the process whereby trees absorb carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, storing the carbon and releasing oxygen back out. Therefore, by using wood from sustainably managed forests, we're contributing to efforts to combat climate change.

Benefits of Using Sustainable Wood

There are a multitude of benefits to using sustainable wood. Environmentally, we can protect biodiversity and reduce deforestation, as well as contribute to carbon sequestration. For health, sustainable wood often involves lower chemical emissions, thus promoting better indoor air quality. Economically, supporting sustainable wood sources can lead to the creation of green jobs and contribute to local economies.

Types of Sustainable Wood Sources

1. Certified Sustainable Hardwoods

Certified sustainable hardwoods are becoming increasingly available on the market, with species such as oak, maple, and cherry being some of the most prevalent. These woods are renowned not only for their durability and strength, but also their natural beauty, making them a favourite for many DIY projects.

Finding reliable suppliers for certified sustainable hardwoods can be a challenge, but it's worth the effort. Look for suppliers who can provide documentation proving their wood is certified under a recognised scheme.

2. Reclaimed Wood

Reclaimed wood, sourced from old buildings, barns, and even salvaged furniture, is an excellent choice for DIY projects. This wood not only brings a unique character to your projects but is also a great way to reuse and recycle. When working with reclaimed wood, it's important to properly clean and treat the wood before use, and be aware of potential hazards, such as old nails or screws.

3. Bamboo

Bamboo is often considered a sustainable wood source due to its rapid growth rate and renewability. It's strong, versatile, and aesthetically pleasing, making it a great choice for DIY projects. There are different types of bamboo available for woodworking, such as strand-woven and solid bamboo, and knowing how to properly cut, sand, and finish bamboo can ensure the best results for your project.

4. Engineered Wood Products

Products like plywood and laminated veneer lumber (LVL) are examples of engineered wood. These products are created by bonding together layers or strands of wood with adhesives, creating a composite material that can often be more stable and less prone to warping than solid wood. Engineered wood products can be a more sustainable choice as they often use less valuable or waste wood in their construction.

Evaluating Sustainable Wood Sources

Certifications and Labels

When sourcing wood for your DIY projects, certifications and labels can provide valuable information about its sustainability. Look for certifications from organisations like the FSC or PEFC, and always check for third-party verification to ensure credibility.

Local Sourcing and Transparency

Sourcing wood locally can not only reduce your carbon footprint but also support local businesses and economies. Understanding the origin of your wood and the practices of your supplier is key to ensuring that your wood is truly sustainable. Look for suppliers who provide clear information about their sourcing practices and can prove a chain of custody for their products.


In conclusion, using sustainable wood for your DIY projects is not only a responsible choice, it's a smart one. It can enhance the durability of your projects, improve your health, and have a positive impact on the environment and local economies. We encourage you to make informed decisions when sourcing wood, consider the certification, locality, and the overall transparency of the wood's journey from forest to your home. Remember, every little choice can make a significant difference. Let's build a better future together, one plank at a time.

The first place to start? Our collection of sustainable wood and other wood fuels. And while you're at it, don't forget to check out our range of kiln-dried wood, lumpwood charcoal, restaurant-grade charcoal, Swedish fire logs, candles, torches, firelighters and kindling, and hardwood ash logs, all sourced responsibly and perfect for your next DIY project.