Mountain forest wood fuel supply chains: comparative studies between Norway and Italy
Journal article, Peer reviewed
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Original versionValente, C., Spinelli, R., Hillring, B. G., & Solberg, B. (2014). Mountain forest wood fuel supply chains: comparative studies between Norway and Italy. Biomass and Bioenergy, 71, 370-380. doi: 10.1016/j.biombioe.2014.09.018 10.1016/j.biombioe.2014.09.018
Case studies of mountain forest wood fuel supply chains from Norway and Italy are presented and compared. Results from previous studies in which greenhouse gas emissions and costs were evaluated using life cycle assessment and cost analysis respectively, are compared. The supply chain is more mechanized in Norway than Italy. Steeper terrain and low road density partly explain the persistence of motor-manual felling in the Italian case. Mechanized forest harvesting can increase productivity and reduce costs, but generates more greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions than motor-manual harvesting. In both cases, the main sources of GHG emissions are truck transportation and chipping. The total emissions are 22.9 kg CO2/m3s.o.b. (Norway) and 13.2 kg CO2/m3s.o.b. (Italy). The Norwegian case has higher costs than the Italian one, 64 €/m3s.o.b. and 41 €/m3s.o.b. respectively, for the overall supply chain. The study shows that mountain forests constitute an interesting source for fuel biomass in both areas, but are a rather costly source, particularly in Norway. The study also exemplifies the care needed in transferring LCA results between regions and countries, particularly where forest biomass is involved.