Hemp to Clean Up Unseen Carbon
I am Advocating for America to Invest in Industrial Hemp.
And no, you can’t get high from it. *
In December 2018 Hemp was made Federally Legal!
As a Building Material it can be a tremendously powerful weapon in the fight against Climate Change, moving us forward on three important fronts simultaneously.
- Sequestering carbon,
- Eventually more accessible sustainable housing,
- And income for small farmers once Congress passes Agricultural Carbon Credits.
And it shows great promise as a fireproof, mold proof, pest proof, breathable, and non-toxic material. And best of all, a thick hemp wall has an R-value of 25, which means you spend a fraction on the energy to keep any space heated or cooled.
Here are a few highlights about Hemp as a Building Material.
- Hemp sequesters more carbon more quickly because it grows faster than anything other than bamboo. But that sequestration is lost if you have to burn your fields after harvesting seeds- why not turn it into an amazing proven building material?
AFFORDABLE MORE ACCESSIBLE, SUSTAINABLE HOUSING
- Once you’ve harvested the nutritious seeds as a protein source you can chop up the 16 to 20 foot leftover stalk, which hold the carbon, mix it with lime and water and turn it into walls – Hempcrete.
- You still need a wood frame- but hemp can replace all the other layers; insulation, drywall etc.
- When wrapped around a wood frame and cured for 24 hrs. you can finish it with plaster like adobe. It is currently about 10% more expensive than a traditional wood framed house. But this will change when we build out the supply chain and no longer have to import the hemp hurd from other countries. Remember that hemp was illegal to grow in the US until Dec 2018.
- You need about 2.5 acres of hemp to build a house.
AS A BUILDING MATERIAL IT IS:
- Carbon Negative- as it sequesters carbon as it grows and is then locked into a lime wall.
- Energy-Efficient R-value or thermal resistance of 25. Regular insulation requires constant energy input – Hempcrete doesn’t. Stays a more constant comfy temp.
- Non-toxic – Can be grown free from pesticides and fungicides
- Breathable: Prevents damp and mold growth because vapor permeable to help reduce humidity and prevent condensation. It buffers temperature and humidity.
- More Soundproof excellent acoustic properties.
- Fire and Termite resistant,
- Extremely windproof
- Lightweight and as a hard wall surface weighs about a seventh or an eighth of the weight of concrete
- Less Earthquake Prone: Apparently flexes under stress coupled with lighter weight.
SUPPORTS LOCAL FARMERS
- Takes out heavy metals and aerates of the soil (deep tap root,) making it a great rotation crop.
- Shows promise for local farmers when we subsidize the carbon sequestration from agriculture through Carbon Credits -instead or subsidizing fossil fuels.
- Will grow anywhere you can grow corn and can harvest 2 crops in places with longer growing season.