TERRAPUB AGri-Bioscience Monographs (AGBM)

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Vol. 1 (No. 1), pp. 1-60, 2011 doi: 10.5047/agbm.2011.00101.0001

Study on the Feasibility of a Harvesting, Transporting, and Chipping System for Forest Biomass Resources in Japan

Takuyuki Yoshioka

Laboratory of Sustainable Forest Utilization, Department of Forest Science and Resources, College of Bioresource Sciences, Nihon University, 1866 Kameino, Fujisawa 252-0880, Japan
e-mail: yoshioka@brs.nihon-u.ac.jp

(Received on May 18, 2010; Accepted on October 18, 2010; Published online on March 31, 2011)

Abstract: The aim of this study was to assess and discuss various aspects related to the feasibility of a harvesting, transporting, and chipping system for processing forest biomass resources in Japan. Within this framework, the author first comprehensively discussed the visions for introducing and diffusing woody bioenergy utilization in terms of the quantification of available woody biomass resources for energy, the development of low-cost harvesting and transporting systems, and the conversion processes. Second, a harvesting, transporting, and chipping system for logging residues was constructed, and the feasibility of the system was examined from the points of view of cost, energy balance, and carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions on the basis of field experiments at forestry operation sites. Third, the feasibility of the energy utilization of forest biomass resources in a mountainous region was assessed by analyzing the relationship between the mass and the procurement cost of forest biomass in the region with the aid of a geographic information system (GIS). The conclusions derived from this study will contribute to the practical implementation of the harvesting, transporting, and chipping system for forest biomass resources and to the realization of utilizing forest biomass for energy production in Japan.

Keywords: forest biomass resources, harvesting, transporting, and chipping cost, energy and carbon dioxide (CO2) balance, life cycle inventory (LCI) analysis, geographic information system (GIS)

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