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Forest Refine, 2012-2014 : efficient forest biomass supply chain management for biorefineries : synthesis report

Bergström, Dan and Matisons, Magnus, eds. (2014). Forest Refine, 2012-2014 : efficient forest biomass supply chain management for biorefineries : synthesis report. Umeå: (S) > Department of Forest Biomaterials and Technology (from 131204), Sveriges lantbruksuniversitet. Rapport från Institutionen för skogens biomaterial och teknologi ; 2014:18

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Current biorefining activities and plans for new biorefineries in Sweden and Finland are largely
concentrated on the production of liquid biofuels for the transport sector. However, the pulp industry
(and other players) are also developing new biorefinery processes, for example to: convert pulp fibers
into new types of materials and products (e.g. textiles, diverse composites and nanocellulose); upgrade
residue streams to deliver marketable products (e.g. via black liquor gasification, lignin extraction,
fermentation of hemicellulose, and gasification or hydrolysis of fibre sludge); implement processes for coproduction
of process steams and marketable products (e.g. gasification and pyrolysis); and extract
useful substances from incoming raw material (e.g. pre-extraction of hemicellulose). Thus, for example
tall oil from pulp mills is increasingly being used as feedstock for both motor fuels and various chemicals.
The raw material requirements of future biorefineries (in terms of abundance, quality and timing of
supplies) may radically differ from those of traditional forest industries and energy plants, demanding
equally radical adjustment of the supply chains. Thus, it is vitally important to harmonize research and
development goals in parts of northern Sweden and Finland in the Botnia-Atlantica (BA) region with
the development of efficient and sustainable supply chains for forest raw material. Hence, the overall
objective of this project was to acquire knowledge of ways to optimize biomass supplies for refineries in
the BA region from existing, planned or potential procurement areas.
An overall conclusion from the studies is that supply costs can be significantly reduced by integrating
supplies of pulpwood and residual assortments rather than providing them via separate supply chains.
However, assessing the costs and benefits of possible systems is not straightforward as they are
influenced by complex interactions between supplies of multiple feedstock assortments and demands
from multiple users. Furthermore, the costs of separating stemwood from residues at a later point in the
chain may reduce or eliminate the benefits of integrated harvest. Hence, the advantages would be
greatest for applications in which there is little gain from separating these assortments. Available
amounts of feedstock could also be increased by pre-treatment operations, which could make previously
non-viable assortments available. However, any cost reductions thus achieved from increasing supplies
should be weighed against the additional pre-treatment costs. Overall, the options studied in the project
indicate that new practices could potentially reduce supply costs by around 10%, compared to current
best practices, under certain conditions.
Another critical factor is to ensure that supplies of biomasses with various qualities can be rapidly
adjusted and adapted to meet shifts (potentially unpredictable) in demand. Terminals can play a key
role in the provision of such flexibility. Current terminals are mainly used as transition points, where
little upgrading is done apart from comminution. Since raw forest biomass cannot be transported long
distances, due to its relatively low value, robust value-upgrading at terminals closer to terminals before
long distance transportation is likely to be necessary. Such terminals must be quite sophisticated in order
to serve as flexible/semi-mobile refineries, i.e. they will need to have access (inter alia) to appropriate
infrastructure, electricity, water and personnel. As most of the unexploited forest biomass resources are
located in inland areas, particular attention should be paid to developing terminal-refinery-integrated
supply chains in these areas for supplying industry-dense areas for further refining or direct use in

Editors:Bergström, Dan and Matisons, Magnus
Title:Forest Refine, 2012-2014 : efficient forest biomass supply chain management for biorefineries : synthesis report
Series Name/Journal:Rapport från Institutionen för skogens biomaterial och teknologi
Year of publishing :24 October 2014
Number of Pages:116
Place of Publication:Umeå
Publisher:Department of Forest Biomaterials and Technology, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences
Publication Type:Report
Full Text Status:Public
Agris subject categories.:K Forestry > K10 Forestry production
Subjects:(A) Swedish standard research categories 2011 > 4 Agricultural Sciences > 401 Agricultural, Forestry and Fisheries > Forest Science
Agrovoc terms:biofuels, biomass, roundwood, supply, sweden, finland
Keywords:bioenergy, biofuels, lignocellulosic, bio-based economy, upgrading, wood procurement
Permanent URL:
ID Code:11689
Faculty:S - Faculty of Forest Sciences
Department:(S) > Department of Forest Biomaterials and Technology (from 131204)
External funders:Botnia-Atlantica, Region Västerbotten and Europeiska regionala utvecklingsfonden and Länsstyrelsen Västernorrland and Länsstyrelsen i Västerbotten and Österbottens förbund
Deposited By: Ylva Jonsson
Deposited On:09 Dec 2014 09:49
Metadata Last Modified:14 Sep 2020 12:21

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