Building in Straw

The advantages of using straw-bale for construction are increasingly well documented. The two main benefits are:

Improved insulation.
Reduced environmental impact.

Insulation

Straw works on the principal of thermal retention and straw bales provide insulation of between R7 & R10, traditional wall batts provide R 2.2
As a result Straw-bale walls allow greater efficiency in heating and cooling.

Straw-bale walls:

  • increase the efficiency of a solar-passive construction thus reducing the need for heating and cooling equipment
  • allow installation of smaller heating or cooling systems than those in conventional homes.
  • provide substantial savings in power and wood-fuel bills.

Environmental impact

Straw is generally a waste product and is generally burnt by farmers. This produces carbon dioxide and an increase in greenhouse gases.
Straw burning causes air pollution through smoke and particulate emission.

For example, every 1 million tons of straw burned releases 56,000 tons of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere.

Straw can be grown in less than half a year in contrast to timber which can take up to 20 years to grow timber for a house. A much more sustainable material.

Little Pig Building Company, more than just a builder.