Nutritious ash is produced when forest fuel is burned up. The ash should be brought back to the forest to preserve the soil fertility. Sweden is the world leader in terms of ash recycling. In Växjö, Sweden, the Swedish Forest Agency recently organized an international conference on the topic. The Swedish Minister of Rural Affairs, Mr. Eskil Erlandsson, attended the meeting.
Photo: Anna Nilsen
Burning forest fuel is environmentally friendly. Heat is generated and the carbon dioxide that is produced is of essence for the forest. The Swedish way of working with ash recycling has gained attention worldwide. But, it is not as simple as it may seem to be. Heavy machines have to go out into the forest and the ash that is spread must be free from hazardous substances. This process costs a lot of money.
- When forest and wood fuel are developed for energy production, it is important to take all the aspects of circulation into account, Magnus Holgersson, Deputy Governor of Östergötland and Chairman of the Steering Group, says. Managing ash requires new thinking to solve the technical, economic and financial aspects. This conference provided an opportunity to exchange present knowledge, which I hope will contribute to a development of ash as a resource.
Mr. Eskil Erlandsson, Swedish Minister of Rural Affairs, shows how much his forest plants have grown additionally after having spread ashes. Photo: Ola Runfors
Project partners from Estonia, Latvia and Sweden discussed the problems concerning ash recycling at the international meeting in Växjö on May 15 and 16. They described the current situation in their respective countries. Furthermore, scientists and officials talked about the latest findings. On the second day, the Swedish Minister of Rural Affairs, Mr. Eskil Erlandsson took part in the discussions.
- Within the County of Kronoberg, ash recycling is conducted according to the recommendations of the Swedish Forest Agency, Marja Gustafsson, the Swedish Forest Agency, says. Therefore, Växjö was the perfect choice for this seminar.
Photos by Anna Nilsen.