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Research article - Peer-reviewed, 2017

Regional GIS-based evaluation of the potential and supply costs of forest biomass in Sweden

Athanassiadis, Dimitris; Nordfjell, Tomas


The potential for harvestable forest fuel (logging residues and stumps from regeneration fellings and small diameter trees from early thinnings) in Sweden, divided in five regions, is provided. Marginal cost curves for logging residues and stumps are calculated through a GIS-based method based on forest inventory plots and locations of selected terminals, and heat and combined heat and power facilities. Four supply chains for logging residues and two for stumpwood were compared. Fixed and variable costs of harvesting equipment and transport vehicles were used for determining the costs of each of the supply systems under consideration. A list with the GPS coordinates of all facilities and terminals was made based on their geographical location. The distance from the center of each forest inventory plot to the nearest receiving point within the region, either facility or terminal, was estimated. There were large differences in the estimated potential of harvestable forest fuel between the regions. The overall annual potential for each of the five regions ranged from 0.97 to 2.73 million oven dry tonnes and the total potential amounted to 9.39 Mt (oven dry). One of the northernmost regions (R1) had the steepest slope in its marginal cost curve. For the other regions, the slope of their cost curves was less dramatic. Information on the economic availability of logging residues and stumps in each region is important for forest fuel suppliers and receiving facilities.


GIS; logging residues; heat and-power facilities; stumpwood

Published in

Frontiers of Agricultural Science and Engineering
2017, Volume: 4, number: 4, pages: 493-501