Ancient forests get new website to aid materials and sustainability choices of designers

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New website can guide designers to the best and most sustainable wood type for a product

A new interactive forest map has been created to show the distribution, growth and removal of American hardwood species from the whole of the United States down to individual counties.

The technology from the American Hardwood Export Council (AHEC) presents accurate information in fantastic detail and visually demonstrates the sustainability of American hardwoods, while guiding designers to the various suitabilities of each material.

The American Hardwood Environmental Profile (AHEP) is an online tool that provides environmental impact data such as carbon footprint, forest replenishment time, acidification, and eutrophication for different species, lumber thicknesses and transport scenarios.
Additionally, the site features a new easy-to-use illustrated species guide, offering information on the appearance, machining properties, main uses, sustainability and availability of more than 20 American hardwood species.

Users can select two species for a helpful, detailed side-by-side comparison.

To assist specifiers in sourcing the material in their region, the site provides a comprehensive list of European trade associations, federations and technical wood organisations that provide local market access to companies trading and manufacturing in American hardwood.

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The site also features an industry approved, photographic grading guide of 9 core species that provides an introduction to grading sawn lumber in accordance with the US rules for international trade.