Sustainably managed forests – an everlasting resource

The world needs renewable solutions to reach a sustainable society. Black carbon needs to be replaced with "green" carbon. Resources such as fossil fuels (oil, coal and gas) need to be replaced by renewable resources such as wind, water, sun and plants.

Wood is one of the few renewable raw materials that can be produced in large quantities. Trees reduce emissions in more than one way. While trees are growing, they capture and store CO2 from the atmosphere. As the trees grow old, they capture less CO2 and are ready to be harvested to become biomass for sustainable products that can replace oil-based alternatives. In that way, the photosynthesis is the natural carbon capture and utilisation.

At Borregaard’s biorefinery in Norway the most important raw material is wood, more specifically Norway spruce harvested from certified woods. Norway operates one of the world’s most sustainable forestries. For every tree that is harvested, new ones are planted. Today, Norway has three times as much forest as it did a hundred years ago. Every year the Norwegian forests, which have been meticulously monitored since the 1920s by the Land Resource Surveys, grow by 15 million cubic metres.

If we use biomass to produce products we currently make from oil, we can save the planet from large greenhouse gas emissions. As long as forests are managed in a sustainable way, the world is sitting on a huge, everlasting resource.