Malaysia is one of the top ten furniture manufacturers in the world but concurrently has one of the highest rates of deforestation globally. A study by the University of Maryland found that between 2000 and 2012, Malaysia had the largest percentage of forest loss (14.4%), ahead of other developing countries such as Paraguay (9.6%), Indonesia (8.4%), and Cambodia (7.1%).
As a local woodworker, these alarming figures became a growing concern to me as I took over my family business of 22 years, a company that specialises in mass furniture manufacturing and interior design.
We realised that it was increasingly vital to call upon those in the related industry, locally and globally, to seek out innovative ways to produce and design items that could tackle the dilapidating conditions of the world’s forestry.
Our own efforts began in 2013, where we conducted a 6-month research to identify sustainable materials and processes for eco-furniture production. We then pioneered the production and application of Malaysian-derived bamboo planks for furniture and interior usage, such as flooring and wall paneling. We discovered bamboo to be one of the best building materials – fast growing, requires little water, and converts a large sum of CO2 into oxygen.
As a developing country, Malaysia is also experiencing a surge of new developments and construction projects, which accumulates to a huge amount of unwanted scraps that are more often than not, discarded. As part of our ongoing initiative to be green, in 2014 we introduced a product line that upcycles construction waste (e.g. wooden pallets) and reclaimed materials to create new furniture and functional art pieces.
As we continue our journey to advocate “green carpentry” and raise further awareness about alternative products to the popular timber, we invite industry leaders, carpenters, woodworkers, architects, designers and the likes to join us in this global initiative to save our eco-system.
For more information, do visit our website.
Text, photo and video are submitted by Harith Ridzuan (Malaysia) – harithgreencarpenter(at)gmail.com
The content, structure and grammar is at the discretion of the author only.
This post is published as an application by the author, to speak as a youth representative at the World Forestry Congress. Have a look at the other entries too!
As a reader, you can support this speaker’s entry:
- Leave a comment on this project in the field at the bottom of this page
- Support the post by clicking the “Like” button below
- Spread this post via your social media channels, using the two hashtags: #Forests2015 #Youth
The first tier selection of speakers will be based on the number of comments, likes and views each entry gets.