Selected emissions and efficiencies of energy systems based on logging and sawmill residues

Helena Mälkki (Corresponding Author), Yrjö Virtanen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

35 Citations (Scopus)


Bioenergy has an important role in the implementation of the Kyoto agreement in Finland. The main sources of wood residues for energy production are logging areas and sawmills. The use of forest chips can be of great significance in reducing carbon dioxide emissions by replacing fossil fuels. Increasing the use of forest chips has environmental benefits, but it also includes possible environmental disadvantages. Therefore, system research is needed to assess the forest chip utilisation prospects for their environmental quality to secure sustainable forest management. Life-cycle methodology was developed and applied to assess environmental burdens and impacts of the logging and sawmill residues throughout the whole fuel chain from the forest to energy production. According to the study, the energy efficiencies of the forest chip systems are quite high. Net CO2 emissions of the systems are low owing to the low input of external primary energy required to operate the systems. Although wood energy is renewable, it has many similarities with fossil fuels, e.g. as the emissions of the conversion phase are significant.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)321-327
JournalBiomass and Bioenergy
Issue number4-5
Publication statusPublished - 2003
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed
EventIEA Bioenergy Task 31 Workshop "Principles and Practice of Forestry and Bioenergy in Densely-Populated Regions" - , Netherlands
Duration: 16 Sept 200121 Sept 2001


  • life cycle assessment
  • greenhouse gases
  • environmental emissions
  • environmental impacts
  • logging residues
  • sawmill residues
  • wood chips
  • forest chips
  • forest residues
  • bioenergy
  • biomass
  • biofuels
  • climate change


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