The greenhouse footprint of wood production in NSW - Fabiano Ximenes


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  • I will start by talking about the
  • There are many factors that determine the energy consumption patterns of wood processing plants. I’ve listed a few here Plant age – dynamic nature of forestry Level of integration: whether coupled with drying capacity and dressing Efficiency – linked to age Greater the degree of mechanization, the higher the energy consumed Softwoods vs hardwoods (type of saws, ease of cutting), size will determine drying times, moisture – the higher the moisture the less efficient the drying process
  • Sunlight on leaves generates chemical reducing power in the choroplasts, which then allows the CO2 to be reduced into carbohydrates. The simple sugars formed are transorted enormous distances from the crown into growing regions (stem, roots). More complex polymers are formed and icorporated into new wood by the vascular cambium. This process requires considerable energy – as much as 50% of the C absorbed by the tree canoy can be dissipated as respiratory CO2. Through the process of photosynthesis, trees take carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. Part of this is spent on respiration for basic plant functional process, and the rest is transferred to stems, branches, leaves and roots.
  • Consumption – 7 million m3 of sawn wood and panel products 75% timber – used for residential purposes
  • This info for detached houses Wall frame: slight loss of market share for steel, from 11 to 9% Florboards – hardwood decreased from 18 to 6% According to the ABARE (2008), 1.2 million m3 of sawn hardwood and 4.04 million m3 of sawn softwood were consumed in Australia in 2006/07. The volume of sawn softwood and hardwood estimated by Bis-Shrapnel to be used in residential dwellings in Australia accounts for 71% and 60.7% of the total volume of sawn softwood and hardwood consumed in Australia.
  • As part of the CAP, we are developing a project on the..., that started in July. The basic aim of the project is to look at the basic role that the use of wood products play in climate change mitigation. Trees store carbon during their growth and that storage is continued physically in wood products in service (timber floor, house frame) and at least partially in landfills The use of residues as energy source in Australia typically replaces the use of fossil fuels, with further greenhouse gains There are also greenhouse benefits when the use of wood products displaces alternative products with higher greenhouse emissions associated with them.
  • In this project we aim to conduct a series of studies, or energy audits of three softwood mills, three hardwood mills, one MDF, one particleboard and wall and frame manufacturers. The studies will include… One aspect often missing in the few studies published is a breakdown in the renewable vs…. This is critical for the wood products industry as typically a large proportion of the energy is derived from residues. The use of waste to generate energy has increased dramatically over the years - use of mill wastes at sawmills increased from 16% in 1964 to 45% in 1974 in NZ. The ultimate aim is for the data to be used in LCAs and alos in building rating schemes – which would require a change of focus, as they currently target primarily operational energy, not so much upstream contributions
  • There are many factors that determine the energy consumption patterns of wood processing plants. I’ve listed a few here Plant age – dynamic nature of forestry Level of integration: whether coupled with drying capacity and dressing Efficiency – linked to age Greater the degree of mechanization, the higher the energy consumed Softwoods vs hardwoods (type of saws, ease of cutting), size will determine drying times, moisture – the higher the moisture the less efficient the drying process
  • Where possible all data was obtained on a monthly basis for between 6-12 months, and then extrapolated to obtain the yearly greenhouse emissions per ton of cubic meter of finished product In the studies, all greenhouse emissions were allocated to the main finished product when the finished product was obvious. In the case of the production of sawn hardwood and sawn softwood where an obvious main finished product was produced, neither by-products (e.g green packing material) nor residues (woodchips used for horticultural purposes) were assigned any of the greenhouse emissions produced. The main finished product carried all the greenhouse burden of production, as that product is the only reason for the existence of the facility. The carbon dioxide emissions due to the use of wood residues to produce energy were not included in the greenhouse footprint assessment, in accordance with international greenhouse reporting guidelines.
  • The aim of the selection of wood-processing facilities included in this study was to cover a wide range of sawmills, from small to very large production capacities. The number of softwood mills in NSW (26) is much smaller than the number of hardwood mills (186). The average log intake of softwood mills in NSW is approximately 95,000 m3. The volume of softwood logs processed in this study represents approximately 35% of the total volume of softwood logs processed in NSW. The structural grade sawn softwood is not immediately ready for use in framing applications – most house framing used in Australia is now pre-fabricated in dedicated truss and frame factories. Therefore, we included a truss and frame manufacturer in the study to cover the secondary processing of the sawn pine. According to Bis-Shrapnel (2008), softwood roof frames and trusses account for 90% and softwood wall frames account for 75% of the total market in Australia. - The vast majority of the hardwood mills (123 or 66%) process less than 3,000 m3 of sawlogs per year, accounting for 16% of the total volume of hardwood sawlogs processed in NSW. The average log intake of hardwood mills in NSW is approximately 6,000 m3. The volume of hardwood logs processed in this study represents approximately 12% of the total volume of hardwood logs processed in NSW (Table 1). The large hardwood sawmill included in this study produced primarily floorboards for the residential market. The floorboards produced leave the plant ready for installation, with no secondary processing required. According to Forests NSW (Seeing report 2009), floorboards account for 48% of the hardwood timber products manufactured from timber extracted from NSW state forests. The volume of plywood covered in this study is equivalent to approximately 25% of the national plywood production. - The information for particleboard and MDF was primarily derived from various national and international sources in the literature, combined with some site-specific data. It was not possible to conduct detailed studies on particleboard and MDF facilities in NSW due to commercial confidentiality issues (due to the very small number of companies currently producing those products in NSW).
  • The mean greenhouse intensity of all operations was low (Table 2) and in agreement with the vast majority of literature. None of the operations had a total greenhouse footprint higher than one tonne of carbon dioxide equivalent either on a volume or mass basis. Although on a volume basis the greenhouse footprint of softwood production was significantly lower than that of hardwoods (nearly 40 % lower), when compared on a mass basis the differences were minimal. However when the greenhouse footprint of truss and frame production is added to that of softwood mills, the trend is reversed (minimal differences in the total greenhouse footprint on a volume basis and approximately 35% higher for softwoods on a mass basis). The significant differences in the results when expressed on a volume or mass basis for softwoods is due to the low density of Radiata pine, especially compared to that of hardwoods. The mean greenhouse footprint of panel products manufacture was significantly higher than that of all sawmills (Table 2). Mill “3’ has a slightly reduced footprint compared to the other softwood mills due to the fact the emissions and energy intensity are expressed on a combined green and kiln-dried product basis (Table 2). The mill produces green and kiln-dried products in approximately equal proportion, hence both products are critical to the existence of the mill. The largest hardwood mill (Mill 4) had a comparatively high greenhouse and energy footprint, higher than almost all the softwood mills and higher than that of plywood on a volume basis (Table 2). The main reason for that was the significant footprint incurred by transport of products and residues. Smaller hardwood sawmills had their products transported over much shorter distances. The other main factor for the differences was that Mill 4 had a much higher degree of mechanization (powered with electricity). The energy intensity of the production is invariably significantly higher than the equivalent greenhouse intensity figure for al processing facilities. This is due to the fact that the energy released by the use of wood residues to produce energy is included in the energy intensity figure, but the associated emissions are not included in the total greenhouse intensity value as explained above. The energy required for drying is the most significant component of the energy intensity of the manufacture of wood products.
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  • Just to illustrate the point, let’s have a look at what happens to the biomass once the sawlogs reach the sawmill. Eg if we look at radiata pine sawlogs that are processed into wall frames – just about one of the most efficient operations in the industry. At our very high tech sawmill, 62% of the biomass in the sawlog is recovered in the green sawn timber, and 38% ends up as residue. Further losses happen during dressing of the sawn boards and in the manufactuire of the frames, and also in service, due to termite and fungal attack. Not including any potential loss in landfill, by the end of their service life only about 42% of the biomass in the original radiata pine sawlog will have been stored in the product.
  • Some context – Obviously climate change is a major concern as we all know, and in order to manage the level of greenhouse emissions countries develop national greenhouse inventories. In Australia, our latest inventory shows that … Mt was emited, bit about different sectors comment about unfortunate lumping together of land clearing with forestry in the reporting
  • .
  • In mills where the timber is kiln-dried, the drying process accounts for most of the energy used. This table is from a 1991 study on a softwood mill. The energy required by cutting the timber is comparatively small compared to that of sawmilling.
  • In order to answer this question, we need to look at what is happening internationally As most of may know, the Kyoto Protocol doesn’t allow the inclusion of wood products in their first commitment period. There is a lot of debate about what approach to be used in accounting for the carbon, how exports/imports are handled in the accounting framework, which methods to use, and no resolution yet. However, countries are allowed to include WP in their NGGI if they wish to or whether they have the appropriate data. If you look at Australia’s NGGI you will see that wood products are included, and in fact, the AGO has just released a new model to account for the C in WP. At a C trading level, no schemes (nationally and internationally) have recognised continued carbon storage in WP – so in effect, the default assumption is that the C is emitted back into the atmosphere as soon as the trees are harvested.
  • Our group delves into a variety of research areas, and here I have a short list of some of the work we do. We have been looking at the effects of biosolids application of tree growth, soil C research and how it may be incorporated into ET –have been very active in research asociated with biochar more recently – There is also a major driver to determine how suitable low-rainfall areas potentially are for plantation establishment, and there are a number of long-term trials and experiments addressing this issue. We are also very interested in how trees might respond to change in climate, in the form of elevated CO2 levels in the atmosphere, increase in T, etc… We also do work on growth and yield modelling, with particular interest recently on biomass and C sequestration. We have a lot of experience in sampling and measuring biomass in the field, and have done considerable work in this area, both above-ground and below-ground. My main area of interest has been on determining C flows for wood products, from the logging dump to the rubbish dump, and more recently have been involved more and more in actual LCAs of the use of wood in buildings, which I will be talking about more later.
  • Our second excavation at the old Sydney Park tip
  • Now this graph shows what the current C storage in ….. According to the DCC, the C that is accumulated in WP in service is about the same as the C stored in all our plantations. The estimated C stored in our landfills is 55% greater than the C stored in the plantations and 45% greater than the C in WP in service. The combined amount of C stored in wood products in service and in landfills is equivalent to all of Australia’s GHG emissions for 1.5 years. Now if we consider that a high proportion of our sawn products are used for residential purposes, and that our houses last on average about 50 years. Now if we also consider that field-based research the majority of the C in our sawn FP in landfills is retained for at least 50 years, then… I’ll get back to this a bit later on in the pres.
  • Currently – 23 Mt
  • The environmental advantages are associated with the various aspects of the life cycle of wood products This diagram gives you an overview of the life cycle of C in WP. Each year in AUS about 25 million M3 of logs are harvested. The harvesting of trees generates residues, which can either be left in the forest to decay, burnt or utilised in some other way. The processing of the logs also generates a significant amount of residues (sawdust, shavings, offcuts) and depending on how they are utilised we may have very different greenhouse outcomes. For instance, if the residues are burnt without any energy recovery, the C will be emitted back to the atmosphere immediately. If the energy created is recovered, eg to help dry the timber in a kiln, then the greenhouse outcome will be much better as we will be most likely avoinding the use of fossil fuels. Following on the life cycle, the timber produced may then be further processed, say in a wall and frame factory (where more residues are generated), before being used in our houses. Once the house is demolished, the products will most likely end up in landfill, where the storing of the carbon may continue for many decades.
  • The greenhouse footprint of wood production in NSW - Fabiano Ximenes

    1. 1. The Greenhouse Footprint of Wood Production in NSW Fabiano Ximenes Industry and Investment NSW CCRSPI – February 2011
    2. 2. Weighing 15-year old Radiata tree Presentation Outline <ul><li>Background </li></ul><ul><li>Carbon in wood products / environmental benefits </li></ul><ul><li>Emissions: harvest and log transport, manufacture and transport markets </li></ul><ul><li>Net greenhouse impact: NSW </li></ul><ul><li>Implications </li></ul><ul><li>Life Cycle Assessment </li></ul>
    3. 3. Project background <ul><li>Climate Action Grant Project (2006-2010) </li></ul><ul><li>Project Objectives </li></ul><ul><li>* Development of an energy budget for the main types of wood products used in the NSW building sector </li></ul><ul><li>* Quantification of the GHG impacts of waste disposal options for wood and paper products in NSW </li></ul><ul><li>* Quantification of the rate and extent of decay of wood and paper products in landfills in NSW </li></ul>
    4. 4. Photosynthesis process ( To produce 0.65 g C – 1 MJ Solar power required (high quality sites)
    5. 5. <ul><li>Consumption of wood in dwellings in Australia </li></ul>Carbon in wood products in dwellings Source: BIS Shrapnel; Sawn Timber in Australia 2008-2022
    6. 6. Wood products in houses <ul><li>Roof frames and trusses: 90% Softwood </li></ul><ul><li>Wall frames: 75% Softwood; 9% Steel </li></ul><ul><li>Flooring: 78% Particleboard; 6% Hardwood </li></ul><ul><li>Decking: 40% Hardwood, 45% Softwood </li></ul><ul><li>Window frames: 48% Aluminium; 27% Softwood; 12% Hardwood </li></ul>
    7. 7. Greenhouse footprint of wood <ul><li>Carbon is sequestered in forests </li></ul><ul><li>Wood products: continued storage in service and in landfills </li></ul><ul><li>Use of processing residues: energy or feedstock for composite materials </li></ul><ul><li>Substitution benefits </li></ul>
    8. 8. Energy and GHG Budget <ul><li>insert text here </li></ul><ul><li>Series of studies – sawmills, MDF and particleboard plants, wall and frame manufacturers </li></ul><ul><li>Energy audit: including energy required during harvest, transport to the mill, manufacture and installation </li></ul><ul><li>Renewable versus non-renewable energy </li></ul><ul><li>Aim: use in building rating schemes (requiring change of focus) and Life Cycle Assessment </li></ul>
    9. 9. Energy consumption drivers <ul><li>Plant capacity and age </li></ul><ul><li>Rate of plant utilisation </li></ul><ul><li>Manufacturing process and level of integration </li></ul><ul><li>Site layout </li></ul><ul><li>Overall efficiency </li></ul><ul><li>Degree of mechanization of materials handling </li></ul><ul><li>Wood species, size and moisture </li></ul><ul><li>Product type and mix </li></ul><ul><li>Degree of finishing </li></ul><ul><li>Air versus kiln-drying and climate </li></ul><ul><li>Energy prices </li></ul>
    10. 10. Components of the assessment <ul><li>Harvest and log transport: </li></ul><ul><li>Total fuel consumption of harvest machinery, log volumes transported, </li></ul><ul><li>distances between the forest and processing mills and total fuel used in </li></ul><ul><li>haulage. </li></ul><ul><li>Manufacture </li></ul><ul><li>Volumes of logs processed, electricty and diesel used in the mill, energy </li></ul><ul><li>required for drying, production breakdown with tracking of total mass </li></ul><ul><li>and fate of residues produced, packaging and any other additional </li></ul><ul><li>significant inputs (e.g. glue in panel production – including shipping </li></ul><ul><li>from overseas if required). </li></ul><ul><li>Transport to the market </li></ul><ul><li>Detailed information on distances to markets, average truck loads and </li></ul><ul><li>fuel efficiencies of transport, as well as transport of residues. </li></ul>
    11. 11. Wood-processing facilities
    12. 12. Greenhouse and energy footprint of wood production Facility Tonnes CO 2 -e/ tonne Tonnes CO 2 -e/ m 3 GJ/m 3 GJ/tonne Particleboard 0.861 0.628 5.371 7.358 Plywood mill 0.810 0.583 4.517 6.273 MDF (medium-density fibreboard) 0.765 0.383 4.613 9.225 BB Sawmill 4 0.611 0.536 5.312 6.057 RP Sawmill 2 0.510 0.255 4.493 8.986 RP Sawmill 1 0.485 0.242 4.163 8.326 MHwd Sawmill 5 0.472 0.283 2.293 3.821 RP Sawmill 3 0.196 0.133 3.191 4.703 MHwd Sawmill 6 0.193 0.185 1.669 1.744 Truss and frame 0.179 0.093 1.200 2.317 Mean 0.545 0.359 3.958 6.277 Standard deviation 0.245 0.182 1.299 1.744
    13. 13. Greenhouse and energy footprint of wood production – cont.
    14. 14. GHG and energy footprint of wood production Softwoods Mill 1 Mill 2 Mill 3 Mill 1 Mill 2 Mill 3 % CO2 % CO2 % CO2 % GJ % GJ % GJ Electricity (includes kiln and boiler) 33.4 51.1 53.0 4.7 10.1 10.2 Transport of products 23.9 18.5 17.4 13.3 14.4 13.2 Transport of residues 16.0 5.7 11.4 8.9 4.4 8.6 Diesel-mill 11.0 2.3 3.5 6.3 1.8 2.6 Log transport 5.6 15.9 6.7 3.1 12.3 5.0 Log harvest 5.0 4.3 5.7 2.8 3.3 4.3 Transport of preservatives 2.5 0.3 0.3 1.4 0.3 0.2 Kiln - residues 2.0 1.3 1.3 58.2 52.4 54.1 Packaging 0.6 0.7 0.6 1.3 0.9 1.7 Total 100 100 100 100 100 100
    15. 15. GHG and energy footprint of wood production Hardwoods Mill 1 Mill 2 Mill 3 Mill 1 Mill 2 Mill 3 % CO2 % CO2 % CO2 % GJ % GJ % GJ Electricity 49.2 52.8 44.4 16.8 22.1 16.7 Transport of residues 17.6 1.1 3.3 23.7 1.7 4.8 Log harvest 13.9 16.4 18.6 18.6 27.0 27.4 Log transport 8.0 11.7 19.8 10.7 19.2 29.2 Transport of products 5.7 9.0 5.5 7.6 14.8 8.1 Diesel-mill 5.0 8.1 8.0 6.7 13.4 11.8 Packaging 0.4 1.0 0.4 2.0 1.8 2.0 Kiln 0.2 0.0 0.0 13.8 0.0 0.0 Total 100 100 100 100 100 100
    16. 16. GHG and energy footprint of wood production Activity Particleboard MDF Plywood % CO2 % GJ % CO2 % GJ % CO2 % GJ Electricity 45.9 20.1 61.4 24.3 65.4 18.4 Kiln 42.3 68.9 27.3 65.7 0.7 44.0 Transport of products 2.6 4.5 2.5 3.9 10.9 12.1 Log transport 2.5 4.3 2.6 4.1 2.0 2.2 Log harvest 0.3 0.6 0.4 0.6 3.1 3.4 Diesel-mill 0.3 0.5 0.3 0.5 2.1 2.4 Transport of residues 0.2 0.3 0.2 0.3 6.0 6.6 Packaging 0.1 0.4 0.1 0.3 0.1 0.4 Other 5.9 0.5 5.3 0.4 9.6 10.6 Total 100 100 100 100 100 100
    17. 17. GHG and energy footprint of wood production Activity Softwoods Hardwoods % CO2 % GJ % CO2 % GJ Electricity (includes kiln and boiler) 45.8 8.3 48.8 18.5 Transport of products 19.9 13.6 6.7 10.2 Transport of residues 11.1 7.3 7.3 10.1 Log transport 9.4 6.8 13.1 19.7 Diesel-mill 5.6 3.6 7.0 10.6 Log harvest 5.0 3.5 16.3 24.4 Kiln - residues 1.5 54.9 0.1 4.6 Transport of preservatives 1.0 0.6 0.0 0.0 Packaging 0.6 1.3 0.6 1.9 Total 100 100 100 100
    18. 18. Greenhouse emissions from wood production in NSW in 2009 (t CO 2 -e)
    19. 19. GHG emissions and long-term storage
    20. 20. Long-term storage from wood production in NSW in 2009 (t CO2-e)
    21. 21. Summary <ul><li>GHG emissions from wood-processing facilities generally low </li></ul><ul><li>GHG emissions from EWPs typically higher than for sawmills </li></ul><ul><li>Energy footprint much greater than greenhouse footprint </li></ul><ul><li>Manufacture is typically the biggest contributor to overall GHG emissions </li></ul><ul><li>Electricity (drying) is the main contributor to GHG emissions in manufacture </li></ul>
    22. 22. Summary – cont. <ul><li>Long term carbon storage in wood products: easily outweighs emissions </li></ul><ul><li>When LTS is factored in: annual production of wood products results in storage of 3 Mt CO 2 -e </li></ul><ul><li>Results highlight the importance of considering whole of life emissions and storage </li></ul><ul><li>Implications: Building rating schemes / Life Cycle Assessments </li></ul>
    23. 23. Acknowledgements This project was financially assisted by the NSW Government, through its Climate Action Program. The cooperation from all wood-processing facilities involved in the study was greatly appreciated.
    24. 24. Machins
    25. 25. Mford
    26. 26. Mford
    27. 28. ANZSIC code Industry Classification Emissions (Mt CO2-e) Change in emissions (%) 1990 2007 2008 2007 to 2008 1990 to 2008 23-4 Wood, paper and printing 1.7 2.5 2.4 -3.5 43.4
    28. 29. Greenhouse benefit – Life cycle perspective
    29. 31. From the log dump to the rubbish dump Forest Sawmill 62% Dressing 47% Wall frame 44% In service 42% Landfill
    30. 32. Australia’s GHG Emissions By Sector Source: DCC 2008 Total emissions: 559 Mt CO 2 -e. Emissions per capita: 1990: 32.2 t CO2-e 2005: 27.6 t CO2-e
    31. 33. Wood – environmental benefits <ul><li>Renewable resource </li></ul><ul><li>Carbon storage </li></ul><ul><li>Low energy-intensity in manufacture </li></ul><ul><li>Processing residues used to generate energy </li></ul><ul><li>Substitution benefits </li></ul>
    32. 34. Energy breakdown <ul><li>Kiln-drying may account for 70-90% of the sawmilling energy </li></ul>Process Energy usage (MJ/kg) Planting/tending 1.0 Harvesting 0.61 Transport to mill 0.99 Sawmilling 1.1 Drying 8.5 Planning 0.29 Transport 0.73 Packaging 0.07 Total 13.3
    33. 35. Carbon Trading Time to move on from the forest!
    34. 36. Substitution effect
    35. 37. 44 years in landfill
    36. 38. Carbon Storage in Australia's Forest Plantations, Wood Products in Service and in Landfill
    37. 39. Sink in Australian Plantation Forests (KP) DCC 2008
    38. 40. Life Cycle of Wood Products