Renewable energy and resources
Over more than 100 years we have acquired unparalleled expertise in the management of large expanses of land and the utilisation of biomass. We are now applying this experience to economic sectors other than horticulture. As a provider of renewable energy and resources, we are already well-positioned and are very much expanding this area of our business.
A focus on wood
Our focus in this segment is on the sustainable utilisation of wood. We are systematically realising the potential of our own sites as locations for plantings of fast-growing tree species on a short-rotation basis. Our short-rotation forestry (SRF) plantations constitute a firm foundation from which we can advance to become one of the major producers in this sector.
We are also establishing our own operations producing fuels derived from renewable tree species, with additional production from services in the management of privately owned forests. The intention is to achieve a sizable market position as a provider of integrated fuel and logistics services for power station operators.
Renewable and fossil fuels
Of the alternative energy sources intended to contribute to a balanced and reliable overall mix of energy sources, renewable resources such as wood have become firmly established. Unlike fossil fuels such as petroleum, natural gas and coal, which are finite resources, renewable resources are regularly available as raw materials according to certain growth and harvest cycles.
Good climate performance
Renewable resources have a good climate footprint:
- to the extent that fossil fuels are substituted;
- due to the essentially climate-neutral cycle created: CO2 is released when fuels are used for energy, but carbon is re-sequestered by photosynthesis during the process of wood growth;
- because state-of-the-art, energy-efficient technology is used in this connection, such as cogeneration units.
In our short-rotation forestry (SRF) plantations, we use fast-growing tree species such as willows and poplars. We plant cuttings, the wood growth from which is harvested after three to four years and utilised to produce both energy and materials. These three-to-four year cycles of growth and harvest are repeated over a total period of at least two decades.
Lower energy inputs
In terms of both inputs and outputs, SRF is more resource-effective than the production of other energy crops. With regard to energy expenditure from planting up until the time when biomass becomes available for heat or power, climate performance is much better than maize, for example. On the strength of its ecological, economic and social constants, SRF satisfies the criteria for sustainability.
Our SRF sites
We value and use plantations as a modern, responsible way to manage land and obtain energy sources. Since 2010, we have been pursuing extensive SRF projects, especially in the Baltic region. Our total area allocated for this use currently stands at 2,967 hectares, of which just over 1,800 ha are already under active management.