Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Energy consumption makes Spanish forestry unsustainable

15.09.2009
Spain is one of the leading European countries, along with Sweden, in terms of wood production for paper paste, but this uses large amounts of energy.

Spanish and Swedish scientists have compared the environmental load stemming from forestry operations, and have concluded that the Spanish sector uses more energy than the Swedish one. They are proposing improvements, such as the use of biofuels, in order to make forestry production more sustainable.

In order to predict the consequences of forestry operations, the scientists have studied the most important wood species used in making paper paste – the eucalyptus (Eucalyptus globulus) plantations in Spain, and those of the Norway Spruce and Scots Pine in Sweden.

The research study, published recently in the International Journal of Life Cycle Assessment, shows that the Swedish system requires less energy than the Spanish one under the same environmental conditions, because of the type and amount of wood produced. Paper paste production and supply in Spain uses 7% more energy in Spain than in Sweden.

"There are large differences, but there are several problematic stages in both countries", Sara González, lead author and a researcher at the University of Santiago de Compostela, who has worked in partnership with the Forestry Research Institute of Sweden in Uppsala, Sweden, tells SINC. The scientist says heavy fertiliser use, the stage of supplying wood to the factory, and the cutting and transport of the wood in the field contribute "considerably" to impacts such as acidification, eutrophication and global warming.

In Spain, the scientists suggest using more effective machinery for the cultivation and harvest stages, since energy consumption in these is higher than in the Swedish case. In Sweden, the researchers propose reducing the amount of wood imported (which comes predominantly from the Baltic states), and the use of trains to deliver wood instead of shipping, which would reduce energy use by up to 40%.

In addition, introducing biofuels such as biomass from forestry itself, would be "an option in both of the cases studied for reducing the environmental impact associated with forestry operations", says González.

The European forestry sector is "extremely multifunctional and provides a broad range of materials, energy and other services used for a more sustainable society", underlines the researcher. According to the scientists, European forests account for 5% of the world total and cover 33% of the land area of Europe. The area covered by European forests is growing by around 0.5 million hectares per year.

References:

González-García, Sara; Berg, Staffan; Feijoo, Gumersindo; Moreira, María Teresa. "Environmental impacts of forest production and supply of pulpwood: Spanish and Swedish case studies" International Journal of Life Cycle Assessment 14(4): 340-353 junio 2009.

SINC | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.plataformasinc.es

More articles from Agricultural and Forestry Science:

nachricht New research recovers nutrients from seafood process water
31.10.2018 | Chalmers University of Technology

nachricht Plant Hormone Makes Space Farming a Possibility
17.10.2018 | Universität Zürich

All articles from Agricultural and Forestry Science >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: First diode for magnetic fields

Innsbruck quantum physicists have constructed a diode for magnetic fields and then tested it in the laboratory. The device, developed by the research groups led by the theorist Oriol Romero-Isart and the experimental physicist Gerhard Kirchmair, could open up a number of new applications.

Electric diodes are essential electronic components that conduct electricity in one direction but prevent conduction in the opposite one. They are found at the...

Im Focus: Nonstop Tranport of Cargo in Nanomachines

Max Planck researchers revel the nano-structure of molecular trains and the reason for smooth transport in cellular antennas.

Moving around, sensing the extracellular environment, and signaling to other cells are important for a cell to function properly. Responsible for those tasks...

Im Focus: UNH scientists help provide first-ever views of elusive energy explosion

Researchers at the University of New Hampshire have captured a difficult-to-view singular event involving "magnetic reconnection"--the process by which sparse particles and energy around Earth collide producing a quick but mighty explosion--in the Earth's magnetotail, the magnetic environment that trails behind the planet.

Magnetic reconnection has remained a bit of a mystery to scientists. They know it exists and have documented the effects that the energy explosions can...

Im Focus: A Chip with Blood Vessels

Biochips have been developed at TU Wien (Vienna), on which tissue can be produced and examined. This allows supplying the tissue with different substances in a very controlled way.

Cultivating human cells in the Petri dish is not a big challenge today. Producing artificial tissue, however, permeated by fine blood vessels, is a much more...

Im Focus: A Leap Into Quantum Technology

Faster and secure data communication: This is the goal of a new joint project involving physicists from the University of Würzburg. The German Federal Ministry of Education and Research funds the project with 14.8 million euro.

In our digital world data security and secure communication are becoming more and more important. Quantum communication is a promising approach to achieve...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

Optical Coherence Tomography: German-Japanese Research Alliance hosted Medical Imaging Conference

19.11.2018 | Event News

“3rd Conference on Laser Polishing – LaP 2018” Attracts International Experts and Users

09.11.2018 | Event News

On the brain’s ability to find the right direction

06.11.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

Removing toxic mercury from contaminated water

21.11.2018 | Life Sciences

New China and US studies back use of pulse oximeters for assessing blood pressure

21.11.2018 | Medical Engineering

Exoplanet stepping stones

21.11.2018 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>