Millions to manure for fast-growing forests
Recent research made at the University of Karlstad shows that pine planted in soil with enriched biocarbon grows better. The result is a potential fertilizer for the forest.
– Our landowners are interested in a really strong plant. We want a fertilizer that is both economical and good for the environment, says Emil Mattsson at Swedish forest owner Mellanskog.
Produced from sludge
The enriched biocarbon is produced from sludge from the pulp and paper mill’s water purification. Mixed with ash from the biofuel boiler and nitrogen from a municipal treatment plant, the biocarbon becomes a fertilizer.
“Stora Enso wants to do good things both for the environment and the economy. Sustainability focus is a must for a modern group with environmentally conscious customers. It is a waste of resources not to take advantage of the residual currents. We want to close the cycle and at the same time reduce the cost of by-products”, says Margareta Sandström, environmental manager at Stora Enso Skoghall’s mill.
Leaves large environmental footprint
“The fertilizers used in the forest today require a lot of energy in the production. We want powerful fertilizers without producing so much carbon dioxide”, says Emil Mattsson.
The next step is to use enriched bio carbon at Stora Enso nursery. The plants will then be planted in the forest during October 2020 and 2021. There, the researchers will then have the opportunity to follow how the future trees grow. The research project has been ongoing since the end of 2018 and is a collaboration between among others Karlstad University, Stora Enso, Karlstad Municipality, Mellanskog, Econova, the Swedish Forest Agency, Umeå Energy and Paper Province.