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Spanish Construction Company, ARTEAGA, Promotes Benefits of Certification

Arteaga1Founded in 2005, ARTEAGA is a small construction company specializing in the production and manufacture of timber structures for housing and other construction projects.

Originally located in Barakaldo, an industrial town near Bilbao, the company is today headquartered in Amurrio, some 40km away. The region is well known for its abundance of villages with traditional wooden housing, much of it artisanal. ARTEAGA brought to the region large-scale timber structure production. Far from competing with local carpenters and woodcraft workers, the company sought to complement their work through the introduction of new skills and wood construction techniques. ARTEAGA uses mainly pine and spruce wood which it sources from Spain and Austria.

From the outset, the company has sought to integrate environmental concerns in all its activities. The use of timber for construction reduces the need for carbon-intensive cement; in addition, it decreases the need for stones from quarries which contribute to destruction of mountainsides and mountain habitats. In addition, ARTEAGA tries to steer customers towards the use of sustainable materials for insulation, recommending wood fibre panels in the place of polystyrene and rock wool – where possible, it encourages sourcing from certified retailers. Recently the company has branched into the production of wooden facades and frames for external finishes on houses. The company also makes efforts to dispose of waste generated on-site as a result of its operations in a sustainable manner.

One hundred percent of the wood that ARTEAGA purchases from Austria is certified. The figure is lower for wood sourced from Spain because few wood suppliers in the country have achieved Chain of Custody certification; however, this is beginning to change. ARTEAGA is involved in promoting concerns for sustainability and certification among Spanish suppliers.

Although the demand for certified products among Spanish customers remains relatively low, ARTEAGA has obtained PEFC Certification. It has also recently achieved ISO 9001:2008 certification from AENOR (the Spanish quality certification association). It has also obtained the K21 quality seal. ARTEAGA is a member of the Euskadi (Basque country) association of wood-sector companies. The Association is the holder of a Group Sustainability Certificate.

ARTEAGA makes concerted efforts to promote among its customers and suppliers the use of wood and wood-based products from sustainably managed and certified sources. This is quite a challenge in Spain where for a long time the country's weak economy meant that concerns about environmental sustainability were not a high priority. In the long run, it hopes that its efforts will help to spread the message about the importance of sustainability and using wood from responsibly managed sources. Going forward, the company hopes that these efforts will help to build consumer confidence in its products and lead to increased demands for its services and sales of its products.

Further Information

  • The ARTEAGA website provides more information on the company and its activities.
  • ARTEAGA also publishes a blog, in Spanish, devoted to sharing knowledge and information about environmental concerns in the timber and construction sectors.

More information:

ARTEAGA Promotes Benefits of Certification (245.51 kB)