Today, 56,2% of the global population lives in urban areas. By 2050, it is projected that this number will increase to 68%. One of the greatest opportunities, and responsibilities, for the construction sector is to design sustainable, inclusive, and beautiful cities.

The construction industry uses more raw materials than any other industry (about half of all materials extracted from Earth’s crust), while building construction accounts for 36% of CO2 emissions in the EU. The embodied carbon in the built environment has been estimated as equivalent to 10-12% of total carbon emissions in several EU member states, while construction and deconstruction/demolition waste are some of the heaviest waste streams generated in the EU, and at 25%-30% of total waste volume, some of the biggest.

As buildings become more energy efficient, their share of embodied carbon is increasingly significant, making it ever more important to promote low-energy materials. Timber buildings are known as low carbon building solutions. Research has shown that wood products used in construction have the longest average lifetime and therefore carbon storage potential. Using wood instead of fossil-based alternatives, or wood substitution, is an essential component for reducing negative environmental impact.

So, how do we increase the use of wood in our cities?

Wood Construction


Is Finland’s Wood City the future of building?

Is Finland’s Wood City the future of building?

Sep 28, 2022

With three-quarters of land in Finland covered by forests, wood is a readily available material here, although it does need to be strengthened for use in mid-rise and tall buildings.…

Photo: InnoRenew CoE

Key challenges and innovation opportunities for Wood Construction

Jun 21, 2022

Wood construction is seen as a prominent solution to reduce and reverse climate change as it is a way to capture and store carbon emissions long-term. But wood construction also…

Photo: World of Wood festival

Growing our low-carbon future – Time for Timber

Dec 15, 2021

Wood Manifesto – published by international wood actors on the occasion of the COP26. It makes the case for wood as a key player in reaching carbon neutrality and explains…

The New European Bauhaus -A Vision for Europe

The New European Bauhaus -A Vision for Europe

Aug 24, 2021

Ursula von der Leyen explains her journey from wood construction sceptic to organic building material fan and why the New European Bauhaus will help make beautiful building with wood more…

Bringing embodied carbon upfront

Bringing embodied carbon upfront

Aug 21, 2021

The World Green Building Council demands radical cross-sector coordination to revolutionise the buildings and construction sector towards a net zero future, and tackle embodied carbon emissions.

Pioneering wood construction

Pioneering wood construction

Aug 20, 2021

Wood Joensuu presents wood construction and wood material related events, research and projects in the Joensuu area, North Karelia. With projects dating back as far as the 1990s, the wood…