Three new members elected to the PEFC International Board at the 24th PEFC General Assembly in Würzburg, Germany. David Ford elected as the new Vice Chair, and two members re-elected for another term. Josien Tokoe, from the Kari’na people of Suriname, is a member of the Organization of the Indigenous Peoples of Suriname (IOS) and the lead for Human, Women and Family Political and Social Rights in COICA (the Coordination of in the Indigenous Organisations of the Amazon Basin). Kurt Ramskogler is Chairman of PEFC Austria, and Managing Director of the LIECO nursery of the Prince of Liechtenstein Foundation. Kurt is also an Advisory Board Member of the BFW (Austrian Research Center for Forests). Dradjad Wibowo is the Chairman and Founder of PEFC member Indonesian Forestry Certification Cooperation (IFCC). He is also the Founder and Chief Economist of Sustainable Development Indonesia (SDI) and an Associate Professor on the Perbanas Institute.
Developed and produced at the Lappeenranta mill site, UPM’s renewable diesel is a good example of the transformation of the forest industry. Finnish innovation helps the industry expand into new fields. Jaakko Nousiainen tells the story of BioVerno, UPM’s renewable diesel.
The story began nearly a decade ago when the management of UPM was looking into expanding the company’s operations from traditional wood and paper industries into new fields. One of the ideas discussed was biofuels.
Soon enough, UPM started research on converting wood mass to biofuel by gasification. Another approach to biofuel production was to utilise the side streams from pulp and paper production, but initially this option did not get as much attention.
“In a way, tall oil was a spin-off from the original research”, says Jaakko Nousiainen, who joined the research team in 2008. The spin-off had its advantages: As tall oil is already in a liquid state, the research team could move straight onto the final stage of the refinement process.
Tall oil proved to be a productive line of research and UPM’s tall oil-based renewable diesel has been available in service stations all around Finland since May.
“The product fits well in a company like UPM. As with wood, pulp or paper, we have a major advantage in renewable diesel production as we have easy access to the raw material. We are also used to managing large processes and have been learning about sustainability for decades. For UPM, responsibility is a prerequisite for our licence to operate”, says Nousiainen.