In this guest article, learn more about how hemp could become an attractive and environmentally-friendly building material as more states in the U.S. allow for hemp cultivation and production.
We want to be healthy and maintain the planet, but what typically trumps that desire is our greed (and sometimes need) for cheaper products.
Soon we might have the best of both worlds. As people are becoming more educated on cannabis, laws are starting to relax. This is huge, and it’s not just opening the doors for getting high.
A change in law will mean we can start using industrial hemp to replace ANYTHING made with plastic…and it’s cheap. Hemp grows fast and doesn’t require much work (not even pesticides).
Hempcrete is made by mixing together hemp hurds, lime and water. If you’re imagining a crumbly, weak material — think again.
Although it doesn’t bear the structural weight of a house (if you were to drop a block of hempcrete into a bucket of water, it would float), it provides well-insulated walls and foundations. The material is durable, easy to work with, and cheap. It’s nearly a third of the price of lumber, according to The Daily Good. To top it all off, hempcrete boasts a great resistance to mold, insects and fire. It naturally regulates temperature, so people with hemp homes rarely ever need to turn on heaters or air conditioners.
A new home currently under construction in Texas is taking advantage of all the good perks of building with hempcrete. The owner of the property and designer of the home, Yoseff Ben-Yehuda, originally imagined the house being built with more mainstream materials. However, after much research he found hemp to be even more affordable…and it will continue to be cheaper forever as he saves on heating and cooling year-round.
Hemp has been used for centuries
Dating as far back as the 6th Century C.E., hemp has been discovered in antique bridges and clothing, along with other materials. The history of hemp is a powerful expression of the versatility of this amazing plant. Today there are over 30,000 uses for hemp; from eco-friendly textiles to fuel that doesn’t pollute the air.
Unfortunately building with hemp materials is only readily available to people who live in states with relaxed cannabis laws. There is no chance for abuse when it comes to hemp since it does not contain any psychoactive ingredients; but it was grouped together with marijuana in the Marihuana Tax Act of 1937.
It’s a only a matter of time until hemp materials can be freely used in the United States, springing us towards a cleaner environment.