HEMP: Something All Homes Should Be Made Of – Scotland Community Begins Sustainable Housing Project

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hemp homeMany people are becoming aware of ways to live that are more harmonious with the planet.  It seems that we are transitioning to a very ancient understanding of how to operate here on Earth, with a very advanced ‘know how’ of technologies and methods to begin making that transition. New ways of living are coming to light and although you may not hear about them often, communities all over the world are starting to implement them.

A new sustainable housing project in the Northwest of Scotland will use industrial hemp as the main building material. It’s made of a prefabricated wall system called Hembuild, which is a mixture of the plant’s woody core and a lime-based binder. Another popular name for this is Hempcrete. This is something all of our homes should be made of.

An English housing company that specializes in hemp-based construction called ‘Hemcrete Projects,’ supplied the system. Two prototype houses have already been completed in the township of Achabeag.

Hembuild ticks all of the boxes when it comes to delivering sustainable properties, and the system is ideally suitable for what are two totally different styled houses but which fulfill the requirements of a scheme where the use of natural materials and environmental sustainability are the order of the day- Peter Smith, Roderick James Architects.

Hemp has many uses, over 50, 000 to be exact. When it comes to new and sustainable housing ideas, it seems to always be about creating a more efficient home in terms of insulation, light, electricity, etc. Mainstream belief on the subject would have you believe that top corporations and government projects are working with the best possible technology to bring forth solutions that work and that are harmonious with the environment. If that was the case, the entire planet would be using Hemp to build everything.

Combined with insulation made from Hemp fibre, Hembuild provides the village in Scotland with houses made from a combination of insulation and thermal inertia. This reduces the energy required for heating. Another advantage of Hembuild is it’s carbon-negative profile. Hemp acts to reduce greenhouse gases in the atmosphere by absorbing and trapping CO2 within the Hembuild walls. Furthermore, as a crop, hemp’s fast cultivation cycle makes it a much more sustainable material than traditional timber.

hemoHempcrete is very versatile as it can be used for wall insulation, flooring, walls, roofing and more. It is completely fireproof, water-proof, and rot-proof as long as it’s above ground. The mixture creates a negative carbon footprint for those who are concerned with the carbon side of things. Hempcrete is a much more versatile, easy to work with and more pliable material than concrete. Earthquakes can’t even crack these structures because they are 3 times more resistant than regular concrete.

Lime is the binding material, which means contractors do not have to use heat like they do when they create concrete. This results in a large amount of energy conservation when producing Hempcrete.

Hemp requires no fertilizer, weed killer pesticide or fungicide to grow. The hemp seed can be harvested as a nutritious food rich in Omega-3 oil, amino acids, protein and fiber. It is considered a “super food.” The outer fibers can be used for clothes, paper and numerous everyday items. This truly is a very powerful plant and should be a no-brainer when it comes to it being used as a mainstream product.

Again, if governments and corporations were really concerned about the environment, like they so often claim to be, they would implement these news ways of operating.  It’s  becoming evident that those within this arena really have no interest in creating a sustainable future with harmonious living conditions for the people. If we want change, we can’t keep looking to them. This is something we have to do ourselves. If we did have an organization in place who’s main priority was the well being of all people, in place of the government and the corporations that run it, things could be a lot different.

These unique properties continue to make hemp a popular choice for Eco-friendly housing projects all over the globe. Hemp based materials have already been used to build houses in Canada, the U.S. and other parts of Europe.

The Scotland project will be building 20 houses in total.









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  1. greg

    How does the initial construction compare price wise?

    • A typical house can range from $90-180 per sq. ft., depending on the upgrades made to the house.

      A hempcrete house can be constructed for approximately $130 per sq. ft., depending on the upgrades made to the house.


      American Hemp

    • arjunwalia

      Not sure, but I know construction is cheap since Hemp grows so fast and so much. I think I read somewhere that it was $ 100,000 to build four homes like this one, but I can’t really remember.

      • Arjun, the silica pre-fabs I mentioned above, would only be around $10,000 for a 1,000 Square Foot home…ANYWHERE IN THE WORLD!

  2. An associate of mine (with whom I’ve lost contact with) who goes by the pseudo-name of Larry Lane, developed a pre-fabricated wall system back in the 70’s which was comprised of expanded silica sand. Unfortunately, there was a carcinogen in the product and by the time he researched it and removed it, he was out of money. These panels were light enough that 4 men could erect a 1,000 sq. ft. house from the back of a flat-bed truck in about 4 hours. The panels are completely fire-proof and impregnable to heat or cold. This silica “foam” was poured into forms like concrete and finished with trowels. All the necessary wiring, plumbing, windows, etc., could be installed at the factory and simply “bolted” together on site!

  3. As a retired builder and designer, I say lets do it. Lets create a company that makes hemp and lime walls, for the US, if we can get govt. approval for this use of hemp, then the hemp industry will bust open in the whole Country.

    • We can but it has to be Imported and meet gov. requirements for thc content It’s a shame and a sham that we can’t grow it here but it’s illegality is about protecting industry’s that would take a hit on their bottom line.

      • Brian, what i’m trying to say is No need to import for the US. Kentucky, has requested their state to grow Hemp as a new product. So what i’m suggesting is; File a Petition for citizens to sign requesting that All Farmers have the Right to Grow this Crop. With enough signatures, it would get brought to the House for a vote Or Possibly a vote by the Public.

  4. mexweed

    As a transitional crop, Hemp serves in the process of REFORESTATION as follows:

    1. Taxpayers fund a Fire Prevention Brigade of internationals, students, interns, refugees, ex-offenders of every age and gender to work together clipping and picking up deadwood and downed branches in drought-stricken areas to prevent wildfires.

    2. Workable wood is trimmed to logs and poles and shipped to town to replace live-cut wood in construction, carpentry and manufacturing.

    3. Sawdust, litter, twigs, chips, shreds, bundled brush are hauled to nearest dry streambed, gully, ravine (of which there are millions of miles to be filled). Lay finest particulate first, bundled weedstalks on top, forming a biomass mound in each creekbed up to source.

    4. Seed thickly with HEMP– root system holds structure in place, and after a season or two an accumulation of litter will form rich topsoil for TREES.

    5. Seed with fast-growing invasive species like ailanthus, eucalyptus, cottonwood, willow depending on your climate, to form permanent droughtproofing.

    6. After a decade or two, seed with noble hardwoods or pines you want your children to live among.

  5. Great article about hempcrete and hemp build materials! The time is nearing for legal American production of hemp fiber, hurd (core), dust, and seed (grain or oil) for the food, animal bedding, clothing, bioplastics, etc. industries.


    American Hemp (NC, USA)

  6. Nicole

    How do I buy one of these houses in Scotland?

  7. Dave Brauteseth

    Sounds like we are all talking the same language and simply we have to motivate our governments around the world to allow us to grow Hemp . Whats the alternative the economies of the world are all shrinking as the populations continue to grow,our planet is dying .We can correct the imbalance now . However we all need our governments to change their views and the only way to do this is to educate the governments of the world . Will it happen , …………We have to move on this and we have to form massive educational programes to educate the people .What has happened to our governments they are all a bunch of easy riders and really we can and must do anything we can to change this . Nelson Mandela did it and what he did he did because he believed in what he was doing was for the benefit of human mankind , on his own really , collectively we could change the world , but hey its not gonna happen if we all talk about it we have to act . Change the thinking of the people why do we have to wipe out humanity completely as is going to happen or are we doing something about it . Please read this comment and those of us who are really interested in the suggestions come back to me and we can start .

    • mexweed

      While waiting for governments to let you grow hemp here’s the Brownspliff idea: roll up high quality POTting soil in a brown paper napkin or bag with one or more HEMP seeds inside; ride bike at night with a sack of hundreds of these, and wherever you see a neglected ignored hedgerow or bush, use a “dibblestick” to dig a deep hole among the roots, and stand a “spliff” in it, then ride a few hundred yards and plant another one, etc. Next growing season, a young plant will get a good start, shade, windbreak protection, waterdrippage, and grow to seed unobserved by anyone; second year, industrial hemp everywhere, too late for anyone to care or sabotage anything!

  8. Great article! I love seeing information of hemp coming out more!.

    One this to note is that lime does in fact require vast amounts of heat to transform it from limestone into the quicklime that is used in construction. The production involves heating the limestone to around 2000C which changed the chemical composition of the lime and releases CO2 as a byproduct in addition to the emissions of the fuel being used to heat the stone.

    Again, great article. Thanks for getting the word about hemp out there!!

  9. from what i understand, you can get enough Hemp to build 2 average size american homes for $12,500.
    Certain size/type structures do not require any/little permits. So you can get 3-4 pallets of Hemp from $2,300-3,500 i guess to give another average.

    Lots of positive things are in motion, FINALLY! link with me if you have other questions or would like to just open up conversation about the realities of Hemp today…

    hempmayor.com (just opened. lots to come)

    • I’m sorry, but your statement sounds so ridiculous, “…3 – 4 pallets of Hemp for $2,300 to $3,500…”, right! AND, “…you can get enough Hemp to build 2 average size american homes for $12,500…”, excuse me?

      How big are the “homes” you’re building? Ten feet by Ten feet?

      GET REAL!

      And, “…Certain size/type structures do not require any/little permits…”, you’re right! Dog houses, bird houses, etc. ANY structure (short of tents & Emergency structures) need permits (and in regards to Emergency structures, “they” need to follow specific “guidelines” to be habitable).

      Please, “qualify” your statement!


  10. Now; Let’s energize these homes.An outcome is immanent. LTEC will change the world. Our super efficient conversion process is one the most sophisticated forms of simplicity known to us at present. We are now a mere $250 000 away from a fully operational pre-production prototype. http://www.endlessenergy.co.za/products

  11. Im all for the idea, but curious as to how the lime in the hempcrete is extracted. Some extraction methods produce a high amount of CO2 gas, if not equal to the amount of CaO, effectively negating a fair portion of the CO2 absorbed by the hemp, possibly exceeding it. If so I would recommend using lime that has been processed without CO2 emissions if possible. Any response on the matter would be appreciated

  12. moss

    hemp =check out Henry Ford and the model T


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