What can be done?

ENSURE ALL WOODY BIOMASS IS SUBJECT TO A CASCADE OF USE CODE AND ENHANCE THE ROLE OF WOOD IN THE CIRCULAR ECONOMY.

WHAT IS A CIRCULAR ECONOMY AND CASCADE OF USE AND WHY WILL IT HELP?

A CIRCULAR ECONOMY IS A SYSTEM DESIGNED TO PROMOTE MAXIMUM USE FROM RESOURCES WHILST MINIMISING WASTE AND POLLUTION.

A CASCADE OF USE FOR WOOD EXPLAINED

1.
Use
Products enter the cascade of use at their initial purpose, for example wood from logging used for building.
2.
Reuse
Products are checked, cleaned or repaired so they can be re-used, for example offcuts and sawdust from the sawmilling process can be used to make boards such as MDF.
3.
Recycling
Waste materials are reprocessed into secondary products such as particleboard and then further recycled until the end of their usable life.
4.
Recovery
Any process that recovers waste or by-products which can be reprocessed for an additional use.

The wood panels industry has the ability in many cases to recover several times post-consumer wood waste and reconvert the material once again into further product for use in the construction and furniture industries thus ensuring that embedded carbon remains locked for several decades.
5.
Disposal
The final stage of the cascade of use, at the absolute end of the material's life, when no valuable benefit can be gained from reprocessing or recovery. At this stage it is sensible to extract any energy value from the wood - but not whilst better environmental or economic options exist.

TO ENSURE WOODY BIOMASS IS PART OF A CIRCULAR ECONOMY, A CASCADE OF USE IS VITAL. A CASCADE OF USE GIVES PRIORITY TO THE MOST EFFICIENT AND LEAST WASTEFUL USE. IT PRIORITISES USES THAT OPTIMISE THE MATERIAL OR RESOURCE OVER BURNING OR LANDFILL, AND THUS PROTECTS THEM FROM BEING WASTED. IN THE UK, VERY LITTLE GENUINE 'WASTE' WOOD IS AVAILABLE. THERE ARE MANY WAYS THAT THE MAJORITY OF WOODY MATERIALS SUCH AS FOREST THINNINGS, SAWMILL RESIDUES AND POST-CONSUMER WOOD WASTE CAN BE RECYCLED, REUSED AND REPURPOSED, LOCKING EMBEDDED CARBON AWAY FOR DECADES.

UNFORTUNATELY, MUCH OF THIS WOOD GETS BURNT TO GENERATE ENERGY, RELEASING THIS CARBON IN AN INSTANT,

A ROBUST CASCADE OF USE WOULD PREVENT THIS WASTE, WHILST PROTECTING THE RESOURCE AND THE ENVIRONMENT.

UNFORTUNATELY, MUCH OF THIS WOOD GETS BURNT TO GENERATE ENERGY, RELEASING THIS CARBON IN AN INSTANT.

A ROBUST CASCADE OF USE WOULD PREVENT THIS WASTE, WHILST PROTECTING THE RESOURCE AND THE ENVIRONMENT.

CASCADE OF USE FOR WOOD CAN HELP TO:
1.
INCREASE AVAILABILITY OF WOOD AS RAW MATERIAL
2.
SLOW THE RATE OF CO2 RELEASE FROM BURNING WOOD
3.
REDUCE THE IMPACT ON US AND THE ENVIRONMENT BY KEEPING THE CO2 LOCKED
4.
PRIORITISE USE OF WOOD FOR HIGHER VALUE PRODUCTS
5.
CONTRIBUTE TO A BETTER GLOBAL CARBON BALANCE
6.
CREATE JOBS AND SAFEGUARD TRADITIONAL CRAFT SKILLS
THE CURRENT GOVERNMENT POLICY
THE BURNING OF WOOD FOR ENERGY USE
WHEN WE DON'T ADOPT THE CASCADE WE RISK:
1.
REDUCING AVAILABILITY OF WOOD AS RAW MATERIAL
2.
INCREASING THE RATE OF CO2 RELEASE FROM BURNING WOOD
3.
INCREASING THE IMPACT ON US AND THE ENVIRONMENT BY KEEPING THE CO2 LOCKED
4.
NOT PRIORITISING THE USE OF WOOD FOR HIGHER VALUE PRODUCTS
5.
NOT CONTRIBUTING TO A BETTER GLOBAL CARBON BALANCE
6.
REDUCING THE NUMBER OF JOBS AND FAILING TO SAFEGUARD TRADITIONAL CRAFT SKILLS
CASCADE OF USE EXAMPLE
THE OPTIMISED AND EFFICIENT USE OF WOOD
THE CASCADE OF USE NOT ONLY SLOWS THE ACCELERATED GLOBAL DEFORESTATION, IT ALSO LOCKS AWAY THE STORED CO2 FOR MUCH LONGER

WE CALL ON THE GOVERNMENT TO REVIEW THEIR POLICY AND EMBRACE A CASCADE OF USE, AS A MEANS OF HALTING THE UNNECESSARY WASTE OF OUR NATURAL RESOURCES AND HARM TO THE ENVIRONMENT

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