prof. dr. Verheyen Kris
UGent has obtained results from the forestry and renewable energy sector to optimize business models for the production of woody biomass.
Local production of wood chips from previously not harvested tree parts (tree tops, thinning products, ...) may be a sustainable source of renewable energy. However this requires harvest methods that have not been used in Flanders (Be) before. We compared different harvest strategies for the harvest and processing of tree tops and thinning products in pine forests in Bosland, Limburg. We looked at the technical differences, the economic viability and the use of fossil fuels in the different methods. In a second phases, focus was on the impact of this additional harvest on the different ecosystem services a forest delivers.
Our results are highly valuable for the forestry and renewable energy sector to optimize business models for the production of woody biomass. Moreover our final results will be useful to estimate impacts of this additional harvest and to determine thresholds for sustainable use.