Sustainability of Wood and Other Biomass

Authored by: Roger M. Rowell

Handbook of Wood Chemistry and Wood Composites

Print publication date:  September  2012
Online publication date:  September  2012

Print ISBN: 9781439853801
eBook ISBN: 9781439853818
Adobe ISBN:

10.1201/b12487-23

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Abstract

The question can be asked, “why study wood chemistry?” Why would so many authors take their time to write a book on wood chemistry and wood composites? The simple answer is that wood and other biomass can be part of a sustainable materials future. However, wood and other biomass will not reach it highest potential until we understand its chemistry and materials properties and how these express themselves in performance. As our supply of nonrenewable resources runs out and becomes more expensive, we must turn out attention to renewable resources. Up until about 1920, almost all of our chemicals and materials were derived from wood. Then our dependence on petroleum, steel, aluminum, glass, plastics, and other synthetics started to grow. Today, we rely heavily on petroleum for our energy, metals, ceramics, and plastics for our materials but these resources are not sustainable.

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