Renewable energy and innovative forest management to face the new challenges of the climate crisis

  • Iris srl

    Unione Montana dei Comuni del Monviso

    Comune di Barge

    Giusiano Legnami srl

    Compolab srl

    Walden srls

GreenChainSAW4LIFE project, co-financed by the  LIFE Climate Action of the European Union, aims at managing local forest in a innovative, sustainable and shared way, for fighting climatic and enviromental risk such as fire, hydrogeological instability, and loss biodiversity. Moreover, the project will allow to use the wood obtained to produce green energy and biomaterials for benefit of the economy local and nature by implementing an integrated local plan for climate, energy and bioeconomy in the Po, Bronda, and Infernotto Valleys.

The problem

Climate change is already underway and will continue: temperatures are rising, precipitation patterns are changing, ice and snow are melting and the average sea level is rising. One of the consequences of what is now a real “climate crisis” concerns forest ecosystems, that are less and less resilient to these sudden changes.
Rural and peripheral areas have a lower capacity to adapt to climate change and are relevant in terms of impact as rural mountain areas cover 35% of Europe’s territory and are home to a population of 112 million people, or 17% of the entire European population. For this reason the main objective of the GREENChainSAW4Life project (full name GREEN energy and smart forest supply CHAIN as driverS for A mountain action plan toWards climate change) is to contribute to the adaptation and mitigation of climate change in mountain areas through the implementation of a new “participatory” forest management model involving the implicit and explicit knowledge of all stakeholders in the planning and management of local forest resources exploitation processes.

The solution

This is how the project intends to respond to these issues:

  • Starting from an analysis of local forest resources that takes into account environmental risks and production potential, a “climate smart” silvicultural approach will be identified and tested on local mountain forests, in partnership with forest owners. The harvested wood will be used to develop a KM0 biomaterial catalogue and its potential as energy source (biomass) will be assessed/evaluated.
  • Following the mapping of energy consumption on the territory and the estimation of the current use of energy from fossil sources, a strategy of energy efficiency and transition to systems of diffuse generation of green energy and low emission will be planned. The project will also evaluate the possibility of creating a local energy community powered by renewable energies and assess the best available technologies for heating and micro-cogeneration from local wood.
  • The data collected during the analysis of forests and local energy system will be used to develop a digital platform to support planning, with free access granted to all stakeholders of the territory. Stakeholders will be able to contribute to the planning process by organising thematic events open to the community and by developing an app for gathering information, opinions and preferences.

Our contribution

Etifor’s Forest Management team will support the partners in several technical activities such as: analysis of local forest value chains and timber market, ecological and climate studies of local forests, training and involvement of local stakeholders about environmental and forestry issues, support in the development of the forest management app, to be used for field surveys.