The French government has proclaimed plans for a sustainability regulation which will guarantee that all new public structures are constructed from at least half timber or other natural materials.
The measure–planned by France‘s minister for cities and housing Julien Denormandie–will be put in place by 2022 and impact all public buildings financed by the French state.
Bio-based materials consist of matter taken from living organisms, with examples such as hemp and straw.
Similar to wood, they affect a substantially lower embodied carbon footprint in comparison with building materials such as concrete and steel.
The proposal aligns with France’s Sustainable City Plan, started in 2009, as well as President Emmanuel Macron’s campaign for his nation to be carbon neutral by the year 2050.
During his seminar at the Living in the City of Tomorrow event Feb. 5 at Unesco, Denormandie cited the construction of the 2024 Paris Olympics complex as the inspiration for the law. Any building in the complex that stands more than eight storeys will be constructed wholly from timber.
The French government also plans to invest €20 million (£16.8 million) toward the upcoming construction of 100 urban farms in metropolitan suburbs.
The farms will be established in priority neighbourhoods – targeted regions in cities with particular issues. The aim is to develop greener suburbs in France, with residents nourished by regionally raised produce.
Architect Populous and engineer Egis introduced the masterplan for the 2024 Paris Olympic Games in 2017; a plan designed to create a successful—and sustainable—Olympic event.
The plan includes many standing buildings in the city, as well as temporary venues built in the vicinity of some renowned Paris attractions.
Denormandie’s objective to render France’s construction business more sustainable comes in the wake of many ecoconscious initiatives staged in response to climate change. These include plans for an urban forest, planted around Paris landmarks, and the publication of RIBA’s Sustainable Outcomes Guide in the UK.