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Södra: CLT reduces carbon emissions by up to 80 percent
SWEDEN (News release) -- Cross-laminated timber (CLT) from Södra has one of the lowest carbon footprints in the market.

A CLT frame can reduce carbon emissions by up to 80 percent compared with a similar concrete frame, according to a new and third-party reviewed Environmental Product Declaration (EPD) from Södra.

The Act on Climate Declarations for Buildings will come into force in January 2022. This is a new declaration that aims to drive developments towards more sustainable construction. The frame is normally the part of a building with the greatest climate impact. On average, it accounts for 45 percent of the climate footprint when constructing apartment buildings with four to eight storeys.

Södra's recently published EPD demonstrates that this figure can be substantially reduced by using CLT. Timber is the only renewable material that can be used to construct high-rise buildings and Södra's CLT produces a climate footprint of 34 kilograms CO₂ equivalents* per cubic metre. This could correspond to a reduction in the climate impact of up to 80 percent compared with a standard concrete frame, depending on how much CLT is used. Few other construction products around the world can compare with such a figure.

"The figure shows that Södra's CLT has some of the lowest carbon emissions in the market and this is true across Sweden as we can offer fossil-free transportation," said Jörgen Hermansson, President of Södra Building Systems.

Major difference compared with other CLT suppliers in Europe
Södra's CLT is composed of planed timber that is finger jointed and glued together into lamellas. The lamellas are then stacked crosswise, which produces a solid block of CLT. There are currently a number of CLT suppliers in Europe - but none has the same conditions as Södra, with its fossil-free operations.

"The low climate impact of our CLT is confirmation of our strong and dedicated sustainability efforts across the value chain. The difference is due to our fossil-free nurseries, sustainably managed forests, biofuel transportation and fossil-free sawmills and production facilities," said Jörgen Hermansson.

Interest and demand for CLT are growing rapidly. This is in part due to the forthcoming Act on Climate Declarations for Buildings.

"The new act on climate declarations will enable a reduction in carbon emissions, supported by the use of forest products as construction materials. The trend for CLT is highly positive. Demand in the market is currently greater than capacity," said Urban Blomster, Business Developer at Södra Building Systems.

*CO₂ equivalents is a standard unit for measuring greenhouse gas emissions. When emissions are indicated in CO₂ equivalents, all greenhouse gases are included as if they were CO₂.

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