While many have gone gaga over environmentally friendly green buildings, U.S. Sen. Roger Wicker, R-Miss., said Tuesday that some energy-efficient standards are hurting the American wood products industry. Wicker made the comments while visiting J.T. Shannon Lumber Co. and its subsidiary, Shamrock Plank Flooring, in Horn Lake.
Company officials say the business is in a growth mode now, but the U.S. Green Building Council’s Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design standards, commonly known as LEED, is a sore subject for them. The family-owned and operated business, with about 260 workers, has its Forestry Stewardship Council certification, which has been required by the U.S. Green Building Council since 2009.
But as an example of how standards are hurting the American wood products industry, company officials noted that foreign-manufactured bamboo — a fast-growing grass — is often used in flooring for new building projects rather than hardwoods. “It’s nothing but glue holding strands of bamboo together. It is formaldehyde, laminates and plastics,” said lumber company owner Jack T. Shannon Jr.
“That is one of the reasons why I’m here today,” Wicker said during his tour of the company. “We want sound science to guide policies.”
Wicker added an amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act which will prevent the Department of Defense from using LEED standards in new construction projects until the National Academy of Science can determine the effectiveness of such standards.
From The Commercial Appeal: http://www.commercialappeal.com/news/2012/sep/25/mississippi-sen-roger-wicker-wants-science-based/