Using cannabis in construction could change how homes are built

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Hempcrete is becoming a popular alternative for eco-friendly construction

The plant of discord that has coexisted with the human being throughout almost all of its history, could be getting more prominence in the construction sector to make ecological housing. Technological advances and environmental awareness are favoring the research and recovery of natural materials that have been used for centuries but applying new technologies to improve their properties and find new uses. Cannabis is not only consumed, but it is also used to make your dream home a reality.

The most environmentally friendly materials are those that lack chemicals and have been obtained from the environment in a responsible way and without damaging it. Hemp is beginning to have a very important relevance for this sector.

One of its best-known applications is Hempcrete, whose name is composed of the word “hemp” and the abbreviation of the word “concrete.” This is the name given to the paste made from a mixture of hemp fibers (the so-called hempseed found in the core of the stalk), lime (limestone powder), sand, and water. Its limestone component means that this composition is also sometimes called HempLime.

The paste thus obtained can be applied directly on site, although, like concrete, it requires a curing period. Over time, the water, lime and hemp petrify, resulting in an extremely strong but at the same time very light structure that can last for thousands of years and, because of its stability, is ideal for seismic zones as it does not crack.

This format contributes to the construction of NZECB (Nearly Zero Energy Consumption Buildings), neutral or even negative. This is because it has a very short growth period (production per hectare is four times higher than wood) and captures more CO2 than trees.

It should be mentioned that although a hemp brick is more expensive than a mud brick, the savings in insulation and energy consumption during the time that the house will be inhabited can make it worthwhile in the long term to opt for this option.

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