The idea behind chipboards and other wood composites is great. You take sawdust and junk and press it all into usable panels that can be used in building and furniture making. No waste! But as it is with all good ideas, there is a trade-off. To make chipboards last for decades, high pressure, lots of energy and bad chemicals are applied. All chipboard furniture items (unless marked) you buy from the usual bunch of retailers will have be made using formaldehyde-based glues. Once brought home they will emit formaldehydes and other nasties forever. Formaldehydes reduce the quality of air tremendously – no wonder so many people have allergies and asthma. There are alternatives available – formaldehyde-free chipboards. Unlike the conventional chipboards, those are not water/damp proof and will not last as long. Mind that chipboards and wood composites in general are not recyclable – you’ll have to chuck the items into a landfill so we cannot talk about any environmental-friendliness here.