Whittling logs down to size

Whittling logs down to size I would like to respond to Dave Loeks' response to my letter regarding the article about his Timberhaven homes. I read the study Loeks referred to and was not surprised a study posted on the Log Home Council's website extolle

I would like to respond to Dave Loeks’ response to my letter regarding the article about his Timberhaven homes.

I read the study Loeks referred to and was not surprised a study posted on the Log Home Council’s website extolled the virtues of log homes.

If this is an example of “contemporary understanding of the energy performance of solid-wood buildings” I wonder that all but one of the references listed in the study were dated between 1967 and 1984.

I’m not convinced by this study.

In all my reading about green and energy efficient building in books, magazine articles and on the web (not specific to any one style of building), the only thing notable about log homes is that they are never mentioned.

Loeks made a couple assumptions, or used a couple of misleading arguments in his letter.

He said, “It is laughable when a theoretically energy-efficient wall is actually 50 per cent or more windows by area.”

This is true of any type of building, including log homes. I think he meant to denigrate non-log homes with this reference to theoretically energy-efficient walls.

What is really laughable is trying to make your position look better by comparing a well-built log home to a poorly built frame home.

I could compare the new supergreen homes built by Yukon Housing and others to a log shack in the woods as an example of how bad log homes are.

Let’s compare apples to apples, shall we?

Loeks also said, “There’s another irony in promoting synthetic building materials …”

I didn’t promote any building materials. I think we need to be looking at the energy required to produce building materials as well as the energy they may or may not save with their use, and make informed and environmentally wise choices.

I agree with Loeks there are “unquantified but evident health benefits of living in a home of natural, organic materials.” There are also very quantifiable benefits, for us and the planet, of living in an energy-efficient home.

Joel Luet

Whitehorse