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State of Finland's Forests 2012: Finnish Forests in
European context demonstrated with selected indicators

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Wood-based energy

Total energy production from wood as percent of the total national primary energy consumption.
Total energy consumption and consumption of wood-based fuels, 1970–2010.


The obejctive of this indicator is to measure the relative importance of wood in compare with other sources of energy. Wood is one of the major sources of renewable energy. Wood’s importance is increasing especially across Europe due to the EU commitments and decisions on the increase of the share of renewable energy from the total energy consumption in EU-27.

At European level 2007 wood energy contributed 3,7% of the final energy consumed. In Finland 2010, wood-based fuels accounted for 312 petajoule (PJ) of energy production in Finland, or 22% of Finland’s total energy consumption. The use of woodbased fuels has increased in Finland since the 1990s. Most forest industry installations are self-sufficient in terms of energy, as they can use all wood waste and waste liquors for energy production. Wood-based fuels are waste liquors and other byproducts of the forest industry (tall oil and birch oil, soft soap, methanol, biosludge, paper), forest chips, industrial chips, sawdust, bark, recycled wood, pellets, briquettes and fuelwood. Most forest industry installations are self-suffi- cient in terms of energy as they can utilise all woody waste and waste liquors for energy production.

The theoretical biomass potential from the European forests in 2010 is nearly 1.3 billion m3 including bark. Approximately half of the potential is made up of stemwood and the rest consists of logging residues, stumps and woody biomass from early thinnings in young forests. The potential is, however, reduced to about 750 million m3 due to various environmental, technical and social constraints. The constraints affect especially residues, stumps and biomass from early thinnings. The use of wooden biomass from forests for energy applications in Europe was in 2009 about 720 million m3 consisting mainly (over 85%) from stemwood.

In Finland the use of wooden biomass from forests as logging residues, branches, small-sized timber and stumps was in 2010 about 7 million m3. Over 90% of the biomass consist of smallsized trees and logging residues. The sustainable potential on wooden biomass from forests is estimated to be about 15 million m3 per year.

  Updated: 27.02.2012 /MLier |  Photo: Erkki Oksanen, Metla, unless otherwise stated | Copyright Metla | Feedback