The Forestry Commission is keen to advocate the use of wood as a source of fuel. There are many ways of burning wood, but if we are to use wood to offset the carbon emissions from fossil fuels, it is important that we burn wood in the most efficient manner.
We will not rule out support to any development, but our ideal scenario is one where:
- The timber comes from a sustainably managed woodland
- The fuel travels the shortest possible distance from the woodland to the point of use
- The production of the woodfuel emits as least carbon as possible
- The fuel is burnt in a modern, clean burning and highly efficient appliance.
Most of the North Wests woodlands are situated in Cumbria and Lancashire but there are other potential sources of woodfuel available throughout the region.
Regional Woodfuel Potential
The North West of England could potentially provide 181,000 green tonnes of woodfuel from its under-managed woodlands. At a 30% moisture content, this could provide 409,500,000 kwh which is enough energy to feed 1,335 average size boilers and could result in up to 100MW of installed capacity in the region, whilst supporting/creating up to 2000 jobs.
Other potential sources of woodfuel have been estimated by the North West Biomass Contacts Group as follows
- Arboricultural Arisings 35000 odt (odt=oven dried tonnes)
- Waste Wood 220000 odt
- Sawmill Co-product 20000 odt
- Recycled Wood 50000 odt
We have produced a list of woodfuel suppliers please see the Biomass Energy Centre website for further contacts.