Hemp Makes This Winery Green

green roog

It is always nice to hear businesses creating their products in a sustainable and environmentally friendly way, and the French winery Château Maris is a great example of it. Château Maris is an organic and biodynamic winery, since their cellar was constructed using bricks made of organic hemp and lime. They also installed a green roof and solar panels, meaning that Château Maris is now a net-zero energy building.

hemp

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Château Maris is a 9,000-square-foot wine cellar that produces enough energy to meet its needs and is also biodegradable. The hemp bricks used in the construction process ensure consistent temperature and humidity in the structure, while they also absorb carbon from the surrounding environment. In other words, the winery needs no heating, cooling or ventilation systems to function optimally.

Hemp is a great building material, since it insulates, while remaining breathable, meaning that, in the case of the winery, it keeps the structure warm in winter and cool in the summer, and always in the optimal temperature range of 54°-63°F. The structure also has two exterior walls, which are connected by an air tunnel that is also well insulated against extreme temperatures. Should additional airflow be required to lower the heat that is created by the fermentation process of wine creation, there is also a manual duct in the cellar’s roof, which can be opened and closed at need.

int

The winery owners decided to use hemp and lime to build their cellar after careful research, which took them about five years. During this time they carefully evaluated all other natural building options, such as stone, earth and even straw. In the end they chose hemp, because it is locally produced and the least expensive. Also, hemp bricks are very light, with a 2-foot brick only weighing about 33 pounds. This makes transporting them very easy. Hemp brick production is also very sustainable, since after the addition of lime, which hardens hemp straw into bricks, the chemical transformation into limestone carbonate captures and sequesters carbon.

So, Château Maris is both biodegradable and sequesters around 44 kilos per square meter of carbon, which it will continue to do for the next 20-25 years. The winery is also currently in the process of applying for a LEED-Platinum certification. Apart from the sustainable nature of the building, the cellar was also fitted with LED lighting, while they also have systems in place to capture rainwater, and to recycle gray water.

But that’s not all. The winery also uses only recycled glass bottles and recycled paper labels for their products. They also donate $1.50 from each bottle sold to the Jane Goodall Institute, the Rainforest Foundation or International Polar Foundation. Château Maris has plans to sell 300,000 bottles of wine to high-end restaurants such as NYC’s Waldorf Astoria this year alone.


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  • Jodi Tressler Greene

    Someday I’ll have my own Vineyard and ill employ these techniques too!

    • Christine Kringle

      Very Cool!

  • Christine Kringle

    got hemp?™ FOLLOW US @DrinkMaryJanes ON TWITTER & FACEBOOK!

  • Christine Kringle

    got hemp?™ FOLLOW US @DrinkMaryJanes ON TWITTER & FACEBOOK!

  • Christine Kringle

    got hemp?™ FOLLOW US @DrinkMaryJanes ON TWITTER & FACEBOOK!

  • Christine Kringle

    got hemp?™ FOLLOW US @DrinkMaryJanes ON TWITTER & FACEBOOK!

  • John C Hansen. LEED AP

    Sequestered carbon? Does the building get heavier?

    At the factor mentioned in the article of 44 kilos per square meter, we need to know more about that factor, and how sequestration occurs, and at what rate. If there is some chemical reaction with CO2 in the air, then the building will get heavier as the carbon is added to the blocks.
    Or, are they calculating the amount of carbon in the hemp that is taken out of the local waste stream and not burned? There simply needs to be a more in-depth explanation of the chemical formula for the sequestering process in order for this claim to be credible.
    Carbon sequestration is an ongoing process and there needs to be a time factor included in the factor that is reported. If the sequestering is based on how much carbon is in the hemp, then it is a one-time event when the building was built. For it to continue over the life of the building, I would expect that there must be oxygen given off into the atmosphere and the carbon is trapped in the lime or hemp. The blocks would get heavier, right?
    Please help up understand this in greater detail.

  • John C Hansen. LEED AP

    Sequestered carbon? Does the building get heavier?

    At the factor mentioned in the article of 44 kilos per square meter, we need to know more about that factor, and how sequestration occurs, and at what rate. If there is some chemical reaction with CO2 in the air, then the building will get heavier as the carbon is added to the blocks.
    Or, are they calculating the amount of carbon in the hemp that is taken out of the local waste stream and not burned? There simply needs to be a more in-depth explanation of the chemical formula for the sequestering process in order for this claim to be credible.
    Carbon sequestration is an ongoing process and there needs to be a time factor included in the factor that is reported. If the sequestering is based on how much carbon is in the hemp, then it is a one-time event when the building was built. For it to continue over the life of the building, I would expect that there must be oxygen given off into the atmosphere and the carbon is trapped in the lime or hemp. The blocks would get heavier, right?
    Please help up understand this in greater detail.

  • John C Hansen. LEED AP

    Sequestered carbon? Does the building get heavier?

    At the factor mentioned in the article of 44 kilos per square meter, we need to know more about that factor, and how sequestration occurs, and at what rate. If there is some chemical reaction with CO2 in the air, then the building will get heavier as the carbon is added to the blocks.
    Or, are they calculating the amount of carbon in the hemp that is taken out of the local waste stream and not burned? There simply needs to be a more in-depth explanation of the chemical formula for the sequestering process in order for this claim to be credible.
    Carbon sequestration is an ongoing process and there needs to be a time factor included in the factor that is reported. If the sequestering is based on how much carbon is in the hemp, then it is a one-time event when the building was built. For it to continue over the life of the building, I would expect that there must be oxygen given off into the atmosphere and the carbon is trapped in the lime or hemp. The blocks would get heavier, right?
    Please help up understand this in greater detail.

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