There’s not much in the so-called “Green Building” movement that will shock most woodworkers and DIYers…

Ideals like durability, reusing salvaged woods and selecting locally available materials have ALWAYS made sense to craftspeople. If you look through our collection of the 31 most influential woodworkers you’ll find many who were green well before their time.

That said, with the green movement building steam there’s a glut of green materials on the market these days and an increasing demand from home owners for green building practices.

How can you make sure that you’re actually making the “greenest” decisions for your projects while still staying on budget? The answer begins with education

What Does Green Mean?
Our working definition of green at is “building practices that emphasize the use of sustainable, environmentally and personally healthy materials.”

What are Green materials?
Green materials are finishes, wood or wood alternatives, veneers, adhesives etc, that have one or more of the following characteristics:

1) recycled content
2) renewable – from sources managed with sustainability in mind
3) efficient manufacturing process – minimal waste
4) locally available to reduce transportation costs
5) salvaged, refurbished, or remanufactured
6) durable

(our definition borrowed largely from the California Integrated Waste Management Board)

Green Carpentry Resources:
There’s not too much out there on green carpentry. There’s green woodworking, but that refers to building with freshly-felled wood.

The best single article I found was from a Woodweb discussion from 2005 about Green Cabinetry: “Green” Cabinetry.

These are more home-owner education oriented:
Getting Great Green Results from a Cabinet Shop – article from a homeowner
Eco-Friendly Kitchen Cabinets – what are “green” cabinets?
How to Select Green Materials for Kitchen Cabinets – instructions, tips and warnings

More Green Building Resources:
The Sustainable Building Sourcebook
Sustainable Building Materials
Suppliers of Alternative Building Materials