Nowadays people are becoming more concerned that their homes are more environmentally friendly. One way to approach this challenge is to look at the principles of green interior design. This is a discipline set up by the Green Building Council in the US to reduce the environmental impact of construction.
One of the main metrics of green interior design concerns the use of materials. Non-renewable materials such as hardwood and steel are used sparingly and if possible renewable materials are preferred instead. One area where it is possible to use renewable materials in the home is the flooring. Many people are aware of the benefits of bamboo flooring, but less is known about coconut flooring.
The coconut palm is classified as a renewable resource because a newly planted coconut reaches maturity in just 5 or 6 years. Because coconut is a renewable resource, coconut flooring can be described as sustainable flooring.
Coconut palms produce coconuts for 50 or 60 years before they become barren. Such palms are called ‘senile coconut palms’. These coconut palms need to be cut down and new coconuts planted to maintain the commercial viability of coconut plantations. In Indonesia and the Philippines there are millions of senile coconut palms that need to be cut down.
The timber from coconut is strong and hard and ideal for making flooring. Coconut is not technically a wood but it is as hard as many hardwoods often used for flooring. Coconut flooring is available in vertical, horizontal and strand woven varieties. The color of the coconut can be changed by heating or ‘carbonization’.
Coconut flooring is further relevant to green interior design in that it is a healthy type of flooring. This type of flooring allows no place for dust mites to live and breed. It is the excrement from dust mites that often triggers allergic rhinitis attacks. Also coconut is naturally antibacterial and is thus a great material to use in the home.
So if you are interested in sustainable flooring you should take a closer look at coconut flooring.