There has been a lot of talk in the industry over the past 12 months on the rise of the steel framing market. In my opinion a lot of the figures being pushed regarding the size of the steel market share is rubbish, but that doesn’t mean they aren’t grabbing some of our market share.

So what can you do to address this?

A recent study showed that consumers are lead by their builders when it comes to choosing the materials for their new home, including what type of frames and trusses to use. Therefore, it is important that the fabricator has the right information on hand to help their builder choose.

It’s hard to beat the reported rebates builders claim they are being offered to use steel, but we have the environment on our side and even though this won’t sway builders, if there is a concerted effort we may be able to swing the consumers. Building with timber frames and trusses is effectively the biggest thing a person can do for the environment, as we all know timber stores carbon for life.

Whether at the supermarket or fuelling your car, you can be assured you will always be faced with the challenge of purchasing the most environmentally product. We need to ensure that people know they can actually make a generational benefit to the environment by building in timber.

The French Government went as far as issuing a decree that required all new buildings to have a certain amount of wood used in the construction of the building, as they recognised this was a proven method in storing carbon and in turn helping the environment. There are wood procurement policies around the world that recognise this, so I argue that we should be using this tactic to push for more recognition in Australia.

Wood is a natural, renewable material that can help tackle climate change. We all know that growing trees absorb carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and stores the carbon, so efficiently that about half the dry weight of the tree is carbon. This carbon remains ‘locked up’ for the life of the wood – for example a 50kg wooden table usually contains more than 20kgs of carbon, so imagine the carbon stored in a house built with timber frames and trusses.

I remember years ago at an FTMA Conference, a person from Metricon stating that they believe steel is better for the environment then timber. What a crock! Our sector uses plantation timber that is continually replanted to ensure we have a sustainable resource, rather than digging a massive hole in the ground that is never replenished with the minerals removed.

I understand this is a simplistic view on the issue but there are many resources that fabricators and the supply chain can access to ensure builders, specifiers and architects are better informed of their environmental footprint.

Every fabricator in Australia should be familiar with Wood Solutions and have their website tagged as their favourite – as this is where you find the answers to all your questions when it comes to timber.

The WoodSolutions website is the most visited timber site in the World and provides information on:

  • Species and materials whether it be softwood, hardwood or other wooden products
  • Products and applications for all your interior, exterior or structural needs
  • Case Studies for residential, commercial and furniture uses of timber by builder, engineer or architect/designer
  • Resources providing you the latest on Standards and codes, specifications, publications, education, timber performance ratings, seminars and other services
  • Find a supplier
  • Events for architects, designers, builders and engineers

The expert advice they provide and the resources available will ensure all your questions are answered and you will realise that the wood is the building material of the 21st Century.

It’s Important You Become A Partner

Every fabricator in Australia should sign up to become a partner of WoodSolutions.  The first step is to complete the online form at at

This free listing will give you visibility to the more than 2500 people who visit the website every working day. Additionally, if you have news about a new product or service, WoodSolutions may be able to help you promote it – please contact to discuss the available options or if you wish any further information please call me on 0418 226 242.

You need to be involved to make a difference, so please sign up as a partner now as the first step in addressing the misinformation in the marketplace about our environmentally friendly products.