Bioenergy oriented forestry
Topic of the practice
Good Practice Information
Jämtland is rich in forest and is good at utilising this biomass resource as energy. The municipality owned heat and power company Jämtkraft is the biggest energy producer in the region and is to 99% fossil free in its production. Its feedstock in the fuel is constituted by approximately 50% sawmill residues, 30% primary forest fuels (thin trees, tree tops, branches and stumps), 10% industrial wood waste and 10% peat. The trend is that the proportion of primary forest fuel will increase and take its shares from sawmill residues. The primary forest fuel is a very important resource and tops and branches are in fact seen as a third assortment in the traditional forestry in addition to timber and pulp. This is possibly due to that the traditional forest final fellings are now commonly biofuel-adapted (80% of all fellings), in the sense that forest residues (also referred to as slash) are sorted out in separate piles already in the cutting moment. The slash recovery is however never carried out from forest stands that are too poor in nutrients or where the slope is too steep. The annual cut that is biofuel-adapted in Jämtland is approximately 16,000 hectares. With the average of 30 tonnes slash per hectare round about 480,000 tonnes of slash are recovered from these final fellings. These numbers give a total energy recovery of 1,100 GWh per year.
Evidence of success
What was previously seen as a waste is now a valuable resource with a high marked demand, in fact, the price on wood fuel is often comparable with the price of pulp wood. The adaption into biofuel-adapted forestry has not only resulted in an extra energy feedstock in the heat and power production, but has also created an extra income for the forest owners and the creation of many jobs dealing with these fuel chains. It is difficult to estimate how many new jobs that are created by the biofuel-adaption as the fuel chain is mainly integrated in the round wood chains. It is, however, an extra moment added to the system and thereby, by definition, it creates jobs. The Swedish Bioenergy Association (Svebio) estimates that there are in total terms 200-300 jobs per TWh bioenergy.
Contact details to obtain further information on the practice
Region of Jämtland