Fast Growing Forests
Irelands climate supports fast growing forests (Pine/Sitka 20-30 yrs) and Short Rotation Crops (Miscanthus & Willow 4-10 years) due to its mild Atlantic climate. There is also a substantial amount of underutilized Biomass & Forest Waste that currently is not realising a return to farmers but meets the supply requirements of Carbon Soles Biomass CHP plants.
Private Forestry owners mainly rely on market prices for
- Saw Log timber followed by Pallet wood, Stake wood and pulp wood
- Pulp wood is largely sold to board mills and is used for wood chip for small grate type biomass boilers
- The vast majority of Forest Waste and Harvest Residues is not suitable for small wood chip boilers and is left to rot on the ground. If gathered and piled on harvest, it will increase returns to the farmer.
- On average 10 Hectares of clear fell produces 700 ton of forest waste (branches, tops, stumps).
Carbon Soles Assessment of Available Biomass Resources has resulted in the company commissioning the design of a boiler that can effectively and cleanly process harvest residues and forest waste such as:
- Forest Thinning’s, Tree Tops, Branches, Stumps, Pulp Wood
- Short Rotation Crops: Miscanthus & Willow,
When clear fell takes place the farmer now has an immediate outlet for harvest residues & forest waste, resulting in a reduction in the time to replant, reducing the impact of beetle larvae on new plantations and increasing the return per hectare.
Carbon Sole Plants were purposely located central to the highest density forested areas, with an objective of meeting each Plants biomass requirements from within 100km radius to limit haulage costs and the supply chain carbon footprint.
The plants can process a variety of biomass including up to 10% Miscanthus. Biomass will be paid for based on type and energy content.
Each Plant requires 640,000MWh of Biomass per annum, which equates to an average of 400 farms supplying every year, i.e. 4,000 family farms on rotation. (Based on average private holding of 10 hectare clear-fells plus other thinning’s).