Life cycle greenhouse gas emissions for products manufactured at a European wood processing company

Ilkka Savolainen, Kim Pingoud, Antti Lehtilä

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference article in proceedingsScientific


    The balance of greenhouse gas emissions caused by wood-based products is analyzed throughout thelife cycles of products manufactured at Enso Group mills in 1997. The forest ecosystem is taken into account in the process, as are harvesting and transport industrial processes, product use and waste management. The consideration is limited to the wood-based products themselves (e.g. paper), and it does not include e.g. the printing process. Only transport is considered for other raw materials than wood. The main factors (energy use and carbon flows) related to greenhouse gas emissions caused by the life cycle of wood-based products are covered by the study.

    The main sales production of Enso Group in 1997 was about 5.7 million tons of paper and board, and 1.8 million m3 of sawn timber and converted products. Harvesting, transport, manufacturing and use of externally produced electricity of Enso Group operations caused greenhouse gas emissions of 6.6 million tons of CO2-eq in 1997. The manufacturing caused about 80 % of the emissions, although about half of the energy consumed originated from the wood-based wastes and by-products. The N2O emissions from the burning processes contributed also somewhat (0.2 Mt CO2-eq) to the total emissions. (About 40 % of the total greenhouse gas emissions from the manufacturing were caused by the electricity bought outside of the company.) The emissions from harvesting and raw material transports caused about 6 % of the total emissions and the product transport about 14 %. The increasing storage of products in use can be estimated to form a small sink of carbon. The used products in landfills exert also a sink term, and the emissions of CH4 from decaying products in the landfills a considerable source. Rough estimates for these terms were estimated on the basis of Central European waste management practices. The forests in the wood procurement area are estimated to increase their carbon pool during the considered period despite cuttings.
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationProceedings of the Workshop : Bioenergy for Mitigation of CO2 Emissions: the Power, Transportation, and Industrial Sector
    Subtitle of host publicationGatlinburg, Tennessee, USA. 27-30 September 1999
    EditorsK.S. Robertson, B. Schlamadinger
    Place of PublicationGraz, Austria
    Publication statusPublished - 2000
    MoE publication typeB3 Non-refereed article in conference proceedings


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