What can be used as medicine, construction material, fiber for clothing, foundation concrete, highly nutritious natural food, excellent for skin care, paper-making, ecological fuel, ...? The answer is - hemp. It is believed that she is one of the most useful plants on the planet, and given the variety of possible applications, who could deny it?
Despite frequent legal and political obstacles, despite the proven benefit and sustainability, hemp reappeared in the spotlight. Many states in the United States legalized marijuana for medical use (which is now going through and in Croatia), some even for recreational use, and hemp as a building material because of its economic, environmental usefulness and longevity is also becoming ever more popular.
The first house full of “hempcrete-a” (eng. = Hemp hemp concrete = concrete) was built recently in Asheville, North Carolina. The house has an area of 315 m2 and the design has a number of environmental elements. Hempcrete is a bio-composite material made from woody core stalks of hemp mixed with lime as binder. The result is an extremely lightweight material – seventh or eighth weight concrete – which blocks floating on the water!
This solidly built, advanced and beautiful house has solid walls that breathe, which is achieved by mixing of hemp with lime and water on site and pouring the mixture between the outer pillars. USA Today says: “This is a material less as concrete, but more like a bale of hay: it has excellent insulation and can absorb pollutants from the air, including the CO2.”
Hemp as a building material is excellent for maintaining heat, which means you can long maintain a constant temperature and to reduce its fluctuations. The interior walls of the house of your dreams are built of “purepanela” produced from recycled paper, which is the core of corrugated paper wrapper surrounded by hard like cardboard.
As reported by CNN, the house has 30 recycled window frames in which they set a high-tech glass and so that the house has lots of natural light which does not heat up excessively the interior space. In addition, the layout of its openness ensures that light reaches deep into the space of the house.
In addition, energy-efficient system of walls with super-efficient air pump for heating (21 Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio – SEER, measures the efficiency of air conditioners), efficient heating and cooling the house by reducing energy costs and the need for expensive equipment. With these installations, the construction of the house will cost around 1430 USD per square meter.
With a deviation of 100% healthy and ecological, which included a petroleum-based foam that was used to reinforce the ceilings and foundations, the house is a still an excellent example of how modern and beautiful buildings can be built almost entirely without chemical ingredients harmful to human health and a way with materials that are not harmful to the Earth.