GOTECFOR – Supporting the use of Forest Biomass in the agro-industry
GOTECFOR is an EIP-AGRI operational group that contributes to the bioeconomy by seeking to optimise the value chain of forest biomass, as a fuel for heating.
Portuguese forests represent more than 3 million hectares and about 87% of them are owned by four hundred thousand individual forest owners. The average forest holding has less than 5 hectares. When forest owners manage their forests, they produce waste that remains on the ground as it is costly to remove it. However, this increases the surface fuel load for forest fires.
A forest federation teamed up with private companies and research institutes to set up an EIP-AGRI operational group to improve the efficiency of the forest biomass supply chain. The operational group aims to make forest biomass more accessible to the market by solving problems in the collection, transformation, transport and delivery of forest biomass (wood chips). Making it attractive to the agro-industry, that can use forest biomass for heating.
The application of the biomass management software is expected to make companies 40% more efficient in terms of operational and logistic costs compared with the previous biomass management systems.
For the agro-industry, FLORALVES, it is estimated that the cost of buying forest biomass (wood chips) is 82% less than buying natural gas.
The new software promoted by the operation group will reduce the forest management costs for forest owners.
The use of forest biomass reduces the risk of fire, since it encourages better forest management and decreases the fuel load in forests.
The project contributes to climate change mitigation by replacing fossil fuel with a renewable fuel which is CO2 neutral.