Hemp: Achieving Net-Zero
BlogBy Dermot Moore
Hemp has a large role to play in achieving net-zero, but a wider adoption of this wonder weed is needed.
In recent years, media attention has focused on CBD products, essential oils and food supplements. This attention is fine, if the focus remains primarily on the traditional business-consumer relationship. Yet, if the concern is genuinely based on environmental and human wellbeing, hemp can offer a much more extensive application. For example, uses in production and industries, such as construction and textiles.
The climate cost
What if we compared sectors with the most significant negative impact on us and the planet?
Industries such as construction and textiles would benefit significantly from mass hemp application and crucially, help in achieving net-zero.
- Traditional construction contributes to approximately 50% of global CO2 emissions. Pollution is primarily due to our dependence on concrete in modern buildings.
- The textile industry contributes to about 20% of global water pollution from the washing of dyed products and releasing plastic microfibers.
- Cotton is also a staple material in textiles, negatively affecting the environment and biodiversity. Cotton production requires a much more significant amount of water and pesticides than hemp. Also, the speed with which cotton is produced means we overlook environmental wellbeing.
3 positive changes we will see when hemp is widely used
- A reduction of pollution in these industrial processes, CO2 emissions, and water contamination.
- An increase in the use of hemp would remove the stigma.
- Construction and textiles have a more noticeable impact on the environment and our lives than luxury products.
The positive impact of hemp on our lives
In construction and textiles, we find a major influence on our perception and experience of a space.
Firstly, hemp’s visual and tactile impact can influence our comfort, happiness and sense of safety.
However, the airflow an area provides is slower to jump to mind. In conventional structures, textiles and construction materials hamper airflow, impacting our quality of life respiratorily and skin health.
Furthermore, we can improve living conditions and attack carbon emissions head-on by promoting the qualities hemp and other biomaterials possess.
What role can hemp startups play in the charge for net-zero?
They invite young individuals into a new creative space where ideas develop and enthusiasm builds for having a role in an exciting industrial development. In addition, new employees are given greater responsibility, vital for learning and career progression.
The freedom and excitement of startups generate an environment that more readily invites inspiration. Inspiration is a critical characteristic if we’re talking about achieving net-zero. The techniques and skills gained in a startup can then spread to other areas of the economy. Startups offer huge possibilities the economy and the environment. Startups are powerful resources to those involved in sustainable developments, achieving net-zero as well as developing sustainable industries, such as hemp.
Sources and further reading:
Find out more about our ambition to achieve net-zero in construction.