Why Bamboo

DEFORESTATION AND INCREASED CO2 EMISSIONS THREATEN THE EARTH'S BIO DIVERSITY AND THE VERY AIR WE BREATHE...

The environmental crisis' at hand have not yet touched your life, but the time is shortly to come. Recent NASA reports of a 60% loss of ozone over the arctic provide an explanation for increased severity in the world’s weather patterns which has only begun to affect us whether directly or indirectly. The social, political and economic implications are difficult to imagine as our ozone layer continues to thin, forests disappear and deserts are occurring at an alarming rate.

BAMBOO HAS AN IMPORTANT ROLE TO PLAY...

The earth desperately needs the attention and action of us all or our children's children will surely not have a world fit to live in. There is no one solution but amazingly, the simple bamboo plant can make a dramatic positive impact in many areas. It is our goal to inform and raise awareness about "Bamboo, People and the Environment" and provide the tools and information to then respond in one's own way in their own world. Every action counts, every person counts.

SIGNIFICANCE OF BAMBOO AS A RESOURCE...
  • 1250 known species of Bamboo, with 1500 possible uses.
  • 2.5 billion people worldwide use bamboo, of which 1 billion people use it for housing
  • The current global market for bamboo products is $12‐15Billion
  • Trade in Bamboo generates US $ 4.5 billion.
  • Provides Livelihood, Ecological and Food Security.
  • Eco-friendly Products
SAVING RAIN FORESTS...

Bamboo is one of the strongest building materials. Bamboo's tensile strength is 28,000 pounds per square inch versus 23,000 pounds per square inch for steel. In the tropics it is possible to plant and 'grow your own home;. in Costa Rica, 1000 houses of bamboo are built annually with material coming only from a 60 hectare bamboo plantation. If an equivalent project used timber, it would require 500 hectares of our diminishing tropical rainforests. Using bamboo to replace timber saves the rainforests. With a 10-30% annual increase in biomass versus 2 to 5% for trees, bamboo creates greater yields of raw material for use. One clump can produce 200 poles in the three to five years. Bamboo generates a crop every year.

ENDURING THROUGH TIME...

Thomas Edison successfully used a carbonized bamboo filament in his experiment with the first light bulb. This light bulb still burns today in the Smithsonian Museum in Washington DC. He also used a bamboo as rebar for the reinforcement of his swimming pool. To this day, the pool has never leaked. An un-rivalled utility, (One resource book lists over 5,000 uses including paper, scaffolding, diesel fuel, airplane "skins", desalination filters, aphrodisiacs, musical instruments, medicine, food and was Alexander Graham Bell's first phonograph needle.

BAMBOO PROTECTS THE ENVIRONMENT AND THE AIR WE BREATHE...

Bamboo is the fastest growing canopy for the re-greening of degraded lands, and its stands release 35% more oxygen than equivalent stands of trees. Some bamboo even sequester up to 12 tons of carbon dioxide from the air per hectare. Bamboo can also lower light intensity and protects against ultraviolet rays. Traditional belief holds that being in a bamboo grove - the favourite dwelling place of Buddha - restores calmness to emotions and stimulates creativity.

GROWING WITH STRENGTH AND SPEED...

With a tensile strength superior to mild steel (withstands up to 52,000 Pounds of pressure psi) and a weight-to-strength ratio surpassing that of graphite, bamboo is the strongest growing woody plant on earth with one of the widest ranging habitats of more than 1500 species thriving in diverse terrain from sea level to 12,000 feet on every continent but the poles. It also grows the fastest: clocked shooting skyward at 2 inches an hour. Some species grow one and a half meters a day.

EROSION CONTROL...

A peerless erosion control agent,. it's net like root system create an effective mechanism for watershed protection, stitching the soil together along fragile riverbanks, deforested areas, and in places prone to earthquakes and mud slides. Because of their wide-spreading root system, uniquely shaped leaves, and dense litter on the forest floor, the sum of stem flow rate and canopy intercept of bamboo is 25% which means that bamboo greatly reduces rain run off, preventing massive soil erosion and keeping up to twice as much water in the watershed. Bamboo is a pioneering plant and can be grown in soil damaged by overgrazing and poor agricultural techniques. Unlike with most trees proper harvesting does not kill the bamboo plant so topsoil is held in place.

A RENEWABLE RESOURCE...

Bamboo is a high-yield renewable resource: "Ply boo" is now being used for wall panelling and floor tiles; bamboo pulp for paper-making; briquettes for fuel, raw material for housing construction; and rebar for reinforced concrete beams. There are 1500 species of bamboo on the earth. This diversity makes bamboo adaptable to many environments. It can be harvested in 3-5 years versus 10-20 years for most softwoods. Bamboo tolerates extremes of precipitation, from 30-250 inches of annual rainfall.

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