Booming bamboo: The next super-material?



Bamboo is being hailed as a new super material, with uses ranging from textiles to construction. It also has the potential to absorb large amounts of carbon dioxide, the biggest greenhouse gas, and provide some of the world’s poorest people with cash.

Bamboo’s image is undergoing a transformation. Some now call it “the timber of the 21st Century”. Today you can buy a pair of bamboo socks or use it as a fully load-bearing structural beam in your house – and it is said that there are some 1,500 uses for it in between.

There is a rapidly growing recognition of the ways in which bamboo can serve us as consumers and also help to save the planet from the effects of climate change because of its unrivaled capacity to capture carbon. “From the field and the forest to the factory and the merchant, from the design studio to the laboratory, from the universities to those in political power, people are more and more aware of this potentially renewable resource,” says Michael Abadie, who took up the presidency of the World Bamboo Organization last year.

“In the last decade, bamboo has become a major economic crop,” Abadie continues.

New technologies and ways of industrially processing bamboo have made a big difference, enabling it to begin to compete effectively with wood products for Western markets.

It is estimated that the world bamboo market stands at around $10bn (£6.24bn) today, and the World Bamboo Organization says it could double in five years.

The developing world is now embracing this potential growth.

In eastern Nicaragua, bamboo was until recently regarded by most of the local population as valueless – more as a nuisance to be cleared than a boon to them and their region. But on land that was once under dense forest cover, then turned over to slash-and-burn agriculture and ranching, new bamboo plantations are rising.

This is the world’s fastest growing plant, ready to be harvested annually and sustainably after four to five years in contrast to the typical tropical hardwood that takes many years longer to mature and can be harvested only once.

The investment in bamboo is having a positive effect on local plantation workers, providing paid employment for people, including women, many of whom were previously jobless, or for men who once had to travel to Costa Rica to find work.

There is long way to go before the grasses now being nurtured in Nicaragua – for technically bamboo is a member of the grass family – can safely be described as the timber of the 21st Century – and the key plant in a more sustainable future for forestry and therefore for the world.

But, for now at least, bamboo is definitely booming.

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(Excerpt of article by Mike Wooldridge of BBC News. NOT AFFILIATED WITH LAMBOO INC.)

For questions regarding Lamboo or our products please visit our website at www.lamboo.us or
contact us at info@lamboo.us“MAKING INNOVATIVE THINKING A STANDARD” – Lamboo Incorporated

Blog by: Dustin Dennison

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About lambooincorporated
I am a marketing representative for Lamboo Incorporated

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