ILIM TIMBER at the world congress WOODRISE on mid-rise and high-rise wood buildings

Mr Carsten Doehring, EOS Board Member, CEO of Ilim Timber Europe and since 2015 President of the German Association of the Sawmilling and Timber Industry (DeSH) had an active role as speaker in the WOODRISE Congress held in Bordeaux on 12-15 September 2017.

Mr Doehring emphasized the climate-political significance and potential of wood construction: wood is a renewable natural resource that captures and stores carbon dioxide. Where wood is used to replace other construction materials, the environmental and climatic benefits are considerable. Increasing the use of wood in construction would create considerable growth opportunities for the European Sawmill Industries.

In his intervention, Mr Doehring explained that the standardisation and modularisation of buildings and new design methods require standardized engineered-wood products, tailored to customer needs and in consistent quality. The growing urbanisation requires a higher degree of pre-fabrication that guarantees shorter construction times, a more meticulous planning process and quality assurance of the production system. In particular, modular construction results in significantly reduced build times. Consequently, new housing can be created in a very short time, compared to traditional construction methods and might generates earlier rental income. Shorter build times reduces the emissions (both in terms of duration and quality) associated with construction sites.

The use of engineered wood products has driven down costs, improved performance and extended the applications of wood construction. Modular construction stands for “High quality, sustainable, innovative, efficient, cost-effective, and shorter time to completion”. Wood is now recognized for its unique properties: the structure of strengths, weight and insolation.  Sawmills answers to those trends either through integration of second processing facilities or by specialising in large scale manufacturing facilities.  Achieving sustained profitability in sawmilling hinges on system-wide process optimization. Consequently, sawmill companies around the world are looking to invest in advanced technologies across a range of areas, from log handling right through to timber drying, optimization and packaging.

It is undeniable that new trends in construction are growing in parallel with environmental considerations. In the EU-28, about 70% of the population lives in urban areas, and this share is expected to further increase in the future. It is thus essential to create an urban development that is both economically and environmentally sustainable. Consequently, the construction industry is facing a transformation time as National Governments are looking for increasing the use of eco-friendly materials and alternatives to more sustainable buildings. The promotion of the use of wood in construction as part of the climate change policy (e.g. slowing down global warming) will have positives effect on the competitiveness of the sawmill companies and facilitate the sawn products trade.

Regarding the use of cross-laminated timber, it was underlined that CLT is gaining interest in particularly in North America, both in the construction and wood industries, and it is expected that production and consumption will increase in coming years.CLT is being used more frequently to build multi-family projects and other tall buildings. Indeed "now we have the technology (CLT) to build 30 storeys or more".

Mr Doering concluded saying “Hopefully, the use of wood usage will continue to grow, particularly in construction applications, as more people appreciate wood's environmental properties and excellent structural performance. Additionally, because sawmills are often located in rural area choosing wood means supporting rural development and green jobs.”

ILIM TIMBER is one of the leading suppliers of softwood and one of the most efficient large-scale sawn timber producers in the world. Its headquartered is located in St. Petersburg (Russia) and production facilities are located in Siberia and in Southern and Northern Germany. The company with sales offices in the Europe and in China, has a unique global production and distribution platform with strong presence on all major softwood sawn timber markets including Europe, MENA, US and Asia.

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