Programme des technologies transformatrices ; Projet no 201000339
La tendance vers la construction verte est en croissance fulgurante depuis les dix dernières années. On estime que le marché de la construction verte représente environ 5 % du marché actuel de la construction. La majorité des bâtiments conçus ou construits dans une perspective environnementale se situent dans les secteurs non-résidentiel ou multifamilial. C’est dans ce contexte que nous nous sommes intéressés à la possibilité de développer et vendre des isolants faits à partir de bois; un matériau généralement reconnu pour ses vertus écologiques. La principale application ciblée dans le rapport est les cavités murales.
Ce rapport se présente en cinq (5) principales sections :
Le marché mondial pour les produits isolants est énorme. Il est estimé à plus de 190 milliards de pi² base R-1. Près de 70 % de ce total est destiné au marché de la construction qui comprend la construction résidentielle (45 %) et non-résidentielle (23 %). La majorité des isolants consommés à l’échelle mondiale sont utilisés en Amérique du Nord et en Europe de l’Ouest. De manière générale, le marché est dominé par les mousses plastiques et la fibre de verre. Le marché pour les isolants autres (alternatifs) oscille entre 2 et 6 % en fonction des marchés dont il est question. Cette proportion est généralement plus élevée dans la réparation et la rénovation que dans la nouvelle construction. Il existe des variations régionales qui sont documentées dans le présent rapport.
Structure industrielle :
Les isolants sont des produits dont la valeur unitaire est relativement faible. Il est par conséquent difficile de livrer ces produits sur de grandes distances. La majorité de la production mondiale se fait dans les deux grands marchés mondiaux soit l’Amérique du Nord et l’Europe de l’Ouest. Le tiers du marché (33 %) est dominé par cinq grandes entreprises qui opèrent plusieurs divisions. Elles sont : St-Gobain, Rockwool, Owens Corning, Johns Manville et Knauf. Il faut dire que les produits dominant actuellement le marché nécessitent d’importants investissements en capitaux. Ceci explique, en partie, cette concentration du marché au chapitre de la production.
Politiques et réglementations :
Cette section documente les grandes tendances qui risquent d’affecter la demande pour les produits isolants. L’augmentation des coûts de production des mousses pourrait offrir des opportunités pour d’autres produits. Les exigences relatives aux émissions de gaz à effet de serre pourraient jouer en faveur des isolants faits à partir de bois. Les politiques de réutilisation des matières résiduelles présentent des opportunités quant à l’utilisation de ces résidus pour fabriquer des isolants. La hausse des exigences de performance énergétique exigera l’amélioration des produits communément utilisés ainsi que des innovations à partir des matériaux moins fréquemment employés.
Performance environnementale :
Cette section montre que les produits isolants à base de bois peuvent contribuer à l’obtention de 8 à 9 % des points pour les systèmes de certification LEED et Green Globes. Il faut toutefois être conscient que l’isolant représente une petite proportion des matériaux entrants dans la construction d’un immeuble (<1 % en valeur). Ceci démontre l’intérêt, du point de vue de la construction verte, à développer des produits qui ont d’autres fonctions que simplement celle d’isoler.
Comportements et exigences d’achat :
Des entrevues exploratoires auprès d’architectes et autres utilisateurs d’isolant ont démontré un intérêt pour des produits plus verts. Les principaux facteurs intervenant dans la sélection du matériau isolant sont sa résistance thermique, son coût et la familiarité avec le produit. Les produits isolants conventionnels ne reçoivent que très peu d’intérêt de la part des architectes. L’isolant n’est pas perçu comme étant très innovateur (c’est plus ou moins une commodité) et a peu d’incidence sur le concept (esthétique ou fonctions) du bâtiment. Une des tendances qui semble poindre actuellement à l’horizon est celle des isolants qu’il est possible d’agrafer par l’extérieur du bâtiment.
Les autres sections du document présentent le contexte dans lequel le projet s’est exécuté (contexte, objectifs, équipe de projet, etc.) et font état des conclusions à retenir (discussion et conclusions). Les propriétés et caractéristiques générales des différents matériaux isolants sont présentées en annexe. Cette section complémentaire recense des exemples de produits pour chacun des principaux types de matériaux utilisés sur le marché incluant la fibre et la laine de bois.
Les informations colligées dans le cadre de ce projet permettent d’établir ces constats généraux :
À court et moyen terme, les principaux marchés pour l’isolant fait à partir de bois sont le marché non-résidentiel et multifamilial.
Le positionnement du produit isolant bois devrait être du côté des produits verts ou respectueux de l’environnement. Il ne s’agit pas d’un matériau dont la performance surpasse les matériaux communément utilisés.
Pour profiter pleinement de ce positionnement stratégique, le(s) produit(s) développé(s) devrai(en)t :
o Incorporer d’autres fonctions (pare-air, pare-vapeur, pare-feu, revêtement structural extérieur, parement extérieur, structure, etc.).
o Utiliser des matériaux issus de la démolition d’immeubles existants, fibres agricoles et autres intrants avec une faible empreinte écologique.
o Être analysés objectivement par l’entremise d’une analyse de cycle de vie.
La conclusion du rapport soulève certaines avenues de recherche pour les années à venir. Parmi celles-ci, on note les pistes suivantes :
Meilleure connaissance des types de construction les plus susceptibles d’utiliser des isolants verts faits à partir de bois.
Critères (incluant le prix et spécification de produit) recherchés par les différents utilisateurs.
Identification des marchés industriels (pas liés à la construction) susceptibles d’être réceptifs à des produits à base de bois.
Potentiel d’utilisation des matériaux de différentes sources (récupération, agricole, etc.) dans la fabrication de produits isolants.
Développement des propriétés (ex. : résistance à la compression) et des procédés.
In this study builders and professional repair and remodellers were given a chance to evaluate 12 of the most common home siding products available in the market today. The products were evaluated on seven different attributes: price, maintenance, installation, attractiveness, status/image, fire resistance, and durability. Overall, fire resistance, attractiveness, and maintenance were selected as the most important product attributes by single-family homebuilders and repair & remodellers. The majority of respondents stated that their customers had a strong influence on their final choice of siding materials. In addition respondents were asked for their opinion regarding product popularity, rate of installation, substitution trends, and their choice of siding products for different categories of homes.
This study is a preliminary investigation of market demand for Western Canadian aspen in three major market places, the United States, Japan and Western Europe. As a preliminary investigation, there was no attempt to statistically characterize specifier populations. Rather, through consultations with industry, combined with the author's personal experiences, potential specifiers were identified and selectively interviewed. This process included aspen lumber/boards at various grades, edge-glued panels, veneer, plywood, and laminated veneer lumber. Both structural and non-structural applications were considered.
Potential market gain for Canadian softwood plywood in residential construction could arise from the emerging Chinese market to build massive numbers of affordable apartments and the upcoming rebuilding effort in Japan following the earthquake and tsunami disaster. Compared to the main Chinese species (poplar), common BC species, such as Douglas-fir, spruce and hem-fir, have competitive advantages in the aspects of log diameter, wood properties and veneer quality and processing productivity. For non-residential construction, Canadian plywood concrete forms also offer competitive advantages over Chinese overlaid poplar counterparts due to their higher stiffness and strength. However, the production cost has to be kept to below US$ 500/m3 for a profit margin. Further, three-ply and four-ply Canadian softwood plywood panels are ideally suited for the base materials of multi-layer composite floor, which currently is gaining momentum in China and other countries.
A sizeable increase in industrial and remodelling market is anticipated for the Canadian plywood industry. This will be mainly driven by a number of specialty plywood products, such as container floor and pallet, light truck, utility vehicle, trailer and camper manufacturing. However, these products are not commonly manufactured by larger commodity manufacturers in Canada. China is currently the largest global supplier of container floors, most of which are made from imported plywood, bamboo and poplar veneer. To meet their stringent requirements and gain a market share, Canadian plywood industry should take appropriate actions in adjusting veneer thickness, veneer grade, veneer treatment, and panel lay-up.
Japan has developed customized products such as oversized plywood for wall applications, and termite/mould resistant plywood for above ground and ground-contact applications. China has developed numerous new value-added veneer products for niche markets. Such products include marine plywood, sound reducing plywood, non-slip plywood, metal faced plywood, curved plywood and medium density fiberboard (MDF) or particleboard (PB)-faced plywood.
In order to stay competitive in the global market, Canadian plywood industry needs to:
remove the trade constraints between softwood plywood and hardwood plywood,
remove in-plant manufacturing barriers to deal with both softwood and hardwood processing,
diversify products for both appearance and structural based applications, and
develop new value-added products for niche markets.
This study suggests the following opportunities for Canadian plywood producers to
incorporate naturally decay-resistant species such as cedar as surface veneer and/or perform veneer or glueline treatment to make marine and exterior plywood for improved durability,
characterize veneer properties from the changing resource for better utilization,
peel some thinner and higher quality veneer for making specialty plywood,
conduct stress grading in combination with visual grading to maximize value recovery from the available resource,
increase the flexibility of panel lay-up for domestic/overseas markets and various applications,
develop mixed species plywood by mixing available hardwood species such as birch, maple, alder, aspen veneer (as overlay materials) with softwood plywood to achieve better appearance and higher performance,
develop new structural composite lumber (SCL) products such as veneer strand lumber (VSL) from low quality logs, particularly beetle-killed, and random veneer or waste veneer,
develop new drying, pressing and adhesive technologies for processing high moisture veneer, particularly hem-fir and spruce, to improve productivity and bond quality and reduce panel delamination,
develop light weight and strong hybrid plywood panels for furniture applications, by adding MDF or PB on the face of plywood,
develop hybrid plywood for floor applications to reduce thickness swell and increase dimensional stability and stiffness,
develop hybrid cross-laminated timber (CLT) panels from lumber, plywood and laminated veneer lumber (LVL) for low- and mid-rise residential and non-residential applications, and
develop a series of new product standards for specialty plywood.
A market research study for each product opportunity is recommended to develop a solid business case for each.
In this study market opportunities for treated glue-laminated (glulam) products were investigated in the industrial wood sector. The main benefits of treated glulam are through-product treatment and the ability to manufacture treated products in shapes and sizes that do not fit into common treating chambers. These attributes provide for very durable and large glulam structures that are appropriate for outdoor use. For these reasons bridges, power poles, and sound abatement barriers were investigated. These are markets where wood has lost market share to or is being challenged by concrete and steel substitutes.
The vehicular bridge market was once heavy to the use of wood. Today wood accounts for only 7% of the number bridges in the US and less than 0.9% of the actual surface area of bridges in place. In interviewing municipalities in Canada it is clear that wood is not the preferred material with many wood bridges being replaced by concrete. Further, none of the municipalities contacted were planning wood bridges. However, wood bridges are still being installed. In the US 0.9% of the bridges installed by area in 2007 were wood. This is good news as wood is holding its market share. Steering clear of high volume or large bridges, local bridges are well suited for wood as they are plentiful, small in scale, and many are in disrepair. If 20% of local bridges were built with wood in Canada this would have equalled approximately $51 million in wood bridge construction in 2007.
Municipalities are much more open to the use of wood for pedestrian bridges and overpasses. Their quick construction and aesthetics are positive attributes in this application. One municipality contacted is planning multiple wood pedestrian bridges in the next five years. However, for the purpose of this market review there is little published information on pedestrian bridges.
Noise abatement barriers are a good high-volume technical fit for treated glulam. Increases in traffic and current road infrastructure improvements will lead to more demand for sound abatement in the future. This market is dominated by concrete, but at a very high price. If treated glulam can give adequate durability and sound performance properties it would be approximately 20% cheaper than concrete. The market for sound barriers in Canada could utilize up to 10 mmbf of wood per year to construct 80 km of barrier. This product can also be marketed as a high-performance acoustic fence for residential markets.
Treated glulam was also considered for utility poles. It is transmission grade poles where glulam would best fit the market as the demand is for longer poles which are more difficult to get in solid wood. This type of pole is where wood is currently being displaced by tubular steel. If glulam poles were used in 25% of the replacement transmission poles per year this could equal 8 mmbf. Light poles or standards are another market to consider. While this is a relatively low volume market glulam light standards are a premium product in European markets.
The consolidation of the homebuilding industry is meant to continue and to have profound impacts on the forest products industry. It is changing the way houses are built as well as the relationships between building materials suppliers and home builders. Along the consolidation way, builders are also gaining more purchasing power as evidenced by the lumber consumption of the Top 100 builders, estimated to near 7 billion Board Feet.
More than ever before, large homebuilders are considering direct and longer term agreement with suppliers of lumber and OSB. It is expected that, due to the emergence of longer term and more direct purchasing agreement, collaborative practices become more developed. As far as building techniques go, we assume that the componentization of the housing industry will keep its advance, especially in the large builder segment. Componentization not only brings more off-site fabrication, but it also relies on a higher engineering content in the housing construction process.
Currently, purchasing agreements are short term based either for lumber, structural panels, engineered wood products, roof trusses and prefabricated walls. However, when questioned about the future of their purchasing agreements, respondents clearly showed a propensity to develop long term agreement. Indeed, every participant to this study pointed out to longer term agreements with suppliers and, in some cases, raised the possibility of more exclusive arrangements. This observation was further confirmed in site visits.
While centralization of the purchasing process is not the preferred choice of every large builder, we hypothesize that the specifiers will increasingly be centralized in the future in the wake of national purchasing agreements. Meanwhile, it is clear that regional offices will continue to have their word to say. Materials selection is not a one way process from top to bottom, but the head office is likely to be involved even when the process is regional.
As of now, most of the interactions between large builders and their suppliers may be summarized as information exchange. This indicates a fairly low level of inter-firm co-operation. However, the majority of participants expect either a shorter supply chain, more direct relationships or more partnering over the next five years. In turn, information and communication technologies, either for fund transfer of business planning, will spread out.
In this study, current market share for wood in British Columbia non-residential construction was determined as well as potential for increased consumption of wood, based on a 194-building sample of 2006 building permits from most of BC’s major cities. For the sample, structural materials used in each project were established through phone interviews with each architect, contractor or other individual associated with the construction of the building. Each project was then compared against the height and area limits for combustible construction as defined in the BC Building Code. In actual market share for 2006, 13% of all buildings (which comprise 5% of all area) were primarily framed in wood. Adding in buildings that were partially framed in wood, 25% of all buildings (22% of all area) are using wood, either primarily or in combination with other structural materials. If every building allowed by code to be entirely framed in wood actually was, seven times more constructed area would be using wood than current practice. Adding in the potential for heavy timber roofs on non-combustible buildings yields a total of eleven times more constructed area that could be using wood. This total potential incremental wood consumption is estimated at up to 27 million board feet of lumber-type products (lumber, trusses, glulam, I-joists and composite lumber) and 13 million square feet of structural panels (plywood and OSB). Previously gathered market intelligence in BC and elsewhere in North America was then reviewed together with the market share statistics to help determine a set of near-term recommendations for the BC WoodWORKS! program to help capture some of this potential market.
The B.C. Wood Specialties Group (BCWSG) laminating mission to Japan took place May 14-22, 1994 and involved visits to Japanese companies and industry associations in Nagoya, Osaka, and Nara. The mission was led by Mr. Peter Fisher, Director, Resource Industries Branch, B.C. Ministry of Employment and Investment. The purpose of the mission was to make contacts and to gather information so that the B.C. wood remanufacturing industry could capture further market opportunities during the trip and identify possible future markets for B.C. wood products.
China has long been recognised as a major potential market for wood-based products. This view has been fuelled by the scale of the domestic market, rising GDP per capita (albeit from a low base), a demonstrated government commitment to housing reform, reduced timber supplies and, more recently, China's accession to the World Trade Organisation (WTO).
These enormous market changes will have significant implications for forest products exporters. A cursory examination of the literature suggests that while there is considerable information and analysis of past trends, few of these provide comprehensive clues to the real areas of competitive advantage for softwood producers, or provide insights into the demands of future Chinese wood products consumers, who will undisputedly be of a different genre to the past consumer.
This study investigates these potential opportunities via a two-part literature review and the results of a market benchmarking survey of almost 1,000 existing or pending homeowners in Beijing, Nanjing and Shanghai, three cities which have been identified with the largest potential for increased demand for wood products related to housing. The first of the literature reviews focuses on the published demographics of housing demand in China, and serves as a background to the benchmarking survey results. The second review is a paper written by Dr. David Cohen at the University of British Columbia, and investigates the cultural, political and societal changes and its impacts on foreigners doing business in China. The benchmarking survey was intended to record the existing awareness of wood-frame residential buildings, along with positive and negative attributes that they associate with these structures.
Highlights of this study include:
At over 1.2 billion people, exploding urbanization, steady economic growth and a significant housing deficit, the growth in demand for housing materials/systems will be massive over the coming decades. At the same time, government reform has created a housing market where consumer quality demands exceed what was previously offered by the State.
With continued environmental protection policies, self-sufficiency in building materials will continue to decline, relying more and more on imports. (Note: overall imports surged by 63.4% year on year in January of 2003, to US$31billion; exports grew by 37.3% to US$29.8 billion, leaving China with its first monthly trade deficit since December 1996. [The Economist])
Like Japan, China’s population is aging, largely due to their “one child” policy. The number of people aged 60 and over is predicted to double in size by 2020.
Income distribution in China is uneven geographically and the disparity is widening. 2.2% of the population of China, living in such cities as Shanghai and Beijing, had reported annual household incomes between US$10,000 and US$15,000 in 2001 (CPIRC). This is considered a very affluent income level in China, a point that must be kept in mind regarding the population’s ability to pay for B.C./Canadian wood products. In contrast, over 50% of the population in China live in western and inland parts of China and earning less that US$1,800 in 2001.
These income levels were confirmed in the market benchmarking analysis of this study, showing annual household incomes among the respondents of primarily between CDN$4,600 and CDN$8,900 per year (26,000 to 50,000 RMB). It should be noted that the vast majority of these household incomes are earned by two people, meaning the average income per person is half this.
Further, average monthly rents for those that did not yet own their homes was CDN$191 for Beijing, CDN$122 for Nanjing and CDN$143 for Shanghai for those surveyed. Surprisingly though, the average existing/expected home purchase size (primarily apartments) was 97 m2 at a price of CDN$72,000 for Beijing, 125 m2 at a price of CDN$75,000 for Nanjing, and 109 m2 at a price of CDN$83,000 for Shanghai. There are two explanations for this divergence between income levels and willingness to pay for housing. First, savings rate is very high in China as compared to Canada. Second, not unlike Japan, interest rates are very low. It will be interesting to see what the existing levels of bad debts in China’s banking system does to the latter in the coming years.
Although evolving, China’s cultural, political, social and economic realities necessitate that B.C./Canadian exporters understand the environment to succeed. The need for local joint ventures, an assessment of risks/costs/benefits and a clear understanding of the dynamics of this market are critical.
The awareness of North American platform-frame and Japanese post & beam wood building systems was significant in all three cities investigated. For example, 44% of the respondents in Nanjing were aware of Japanese post & beam and 22% aware of North American platform-frame homes. Awareness came primarily from advertisements in China, followed by exposure through television / cinema programming. Awareness of wood-based home systems increased both with the respondent’s level of income and education.
There was an even higher awareness of combined wood / concrete / masonry building systems. This was found as a curious result as evidence of such structures in urban China is not evident. Further investigation revealed that the high awareness comes from the respondents’ previous life in (or knowledge of) rural homes in China where such structures are common. This is a very important issue regarding the Chinese connotations of wood-based homes. The image of these masonry/wood rural homes is not high, but rather associated with subsistence living. This is a much needed area for further market research, as it will not be clear whether or not this influences responses to positive / negative attitudes toward wood-based homes (next two highlights).
Aesthetics of wood-framed homes was the number one positive attribute in the survey in all three cities, followed by its insulative properties and environmental protection. Attributes such as “natural” and comfortable were also common among respondents. It is interesting to see that the performance of wood structures was NOT listed as a positive except for its earthquake resistance (see negative attributes).
On the negative attributes side, concerns over fire ranked number one in all three cities. The other negative attributes noted were virtually all performance related, including lack of insect resistance, moisture resistance, or even seismic concerns (conflicting with the positive mention above). Dealing with the concern over these negatives will be key in any promotion activity in China.
The results of this study suggest that there is a strong potential demand B.C./Canadian wood products/systems. In addition to continuing exposure through the existing promotion of high-end single-family homes, it is recommended that the greatest potential lie in the recognition of the cultural, social, political and economic realities that exist for housing in China. These largely point toward increased wood-use in their common low-rise multi-family structures. This must include dealing with the existing negative performance connotations of wood by the Chinese.
Promotional efforts by our government and industry need to incorporate the knowledge gained by the market intelligence generated in this and ongoing market research studies.
This benchmarking study aims at providing the Canadian industry, agencies and governments with the necessary understanding of the knowledge and perception of wood roof trusses among specifiers in selected urban regions in China for ongoing and future promotions of wood roof trusses in China.
The objectives of this project are the following:
1. Assess current awareness, knowledge and perception of wood roof trusses in multi-family housing among specifiers (architects, engineers and builders/developers);
2. Examine how decisions on roofing/building systems and materials are made;
3. Determine best ways to transfer knowledge about wood roof truss systems to specifiers.
Two separate surveys were carried out for benchmarking wood use in roofs in China. The first survey was part of a survey of Chinese building specifiers (Benchmarking Chinese Building Specifiers (Cohen and Ding 2004)) carried out in October/November 2003. A second survey was administered during the Conference on Hybrid Building Construction in China and Wood Roof Truss Workshops in Shanghai and Beijing in December 2003.