Biomass recovery operations in New Zealand: a review of the literature
Type of content
Executive Summary; Plantation forests in New Zealand generate a considerable amount of woody residues at the time of harvesting. These residues comprise branches, tree tops, and offcuts from log manufacturing on the landing, but also lower value merchantable material left in the cutover that is not economic to extract. Harvest residues can impede harvesting, processing and forest re-establishment operations and, if mobilised during a storm, can affect the downstream environment. Conversely, converting residues into woody biomass products create new market opportunities. The current FGR harvesting and logistics programme focusses on automation of forest operations, including developing more effective, efficient and safe methods of processing on the log landing. As these processes focus on maximising value recovery from the forest resource, such systems cannot be successful without efficient residue management systems to support them. Concurrently, increasing concerns about environmental risk, and the role of renewable forestry resources in mitigating climate change, has resulted in increased interest in efficient and cost-effective biomass recovery operations. There is a lack of information about the technologies used to recover harvest residues, the types of merchantable products produced, and who uses these products in New Zealand. This report introduces forest biomass operations and reviews previous literature that has studied biomass harvesting systems, both in New Zealand and overseas. Biomass recovery technologies and systems, their efficiency and costs, as well as variables affecting the supply chain have been summarised. Examples of forest biomass end-users and markets in New Zealand currently being operated in New Zealand are also provided.
Ngā upoko tukutuku/Māori subject headings
ANZSRC fields of research
Fields of Research::30 - Agricultural, veterinary and food sciences::3007 - Forestry sciences::300707 - Forestry management and environment