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The National Wood Fuel Conference lights up Grown in Britain Week

The National Wood Fuel Conference held every year in Grown in Britain Week ignited the call for more consistent policies from government, more cohesion in the sector and production of higher quality products 

Delegates at this year’s National Wood Fuel Conference were urged to promote the benefits of biomass as part of the wider renewable energy sector and consider collaborative working across the supply chain from woodland owners to end markets.

Chaired by Dougal Driver, CEO in Britain, the conference was organised by Surrey Hills Enterprises in association with the CLA and sponsored by LC Energy, Surrey County Council and the Forestry Commission.

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Summing up the conference, Mark Lebus of LC Energy said: “Today’s conference demonstrated the resources we have available, the funding and market opportunities which are open to us and the healthy status of this country’s woodlands. Our future growth and success relies on integrated lobbying to ensure that Government support and funding is secured for the next four years together with greater competitiveness and increased communication, trust and collaboration across the whole supply chain.”

 

Presentation highlights included:

·         Biomass should sell itself as part of the wider renewable heat sector.

·         District heating is now accepted as part of our energy infrastructure, in the same way as our gas and electricity networks. It also allows a range of renewable energy technologies to be used to complement one another making best use of local resources.

·         There is a range of Government support available to help woodland owners and the forestry sector grasp the business opportunities linked to the evolving wood fuel and timber markets.

·         It is time to dispel some myths: forestry in England is thriving, we have seen a doubling of softwood production in the last five years and it takes just 40 days growth to replace the annual wood fuel harvest.

·         Active woodland management has a vital role in adding value, encouraging biodiversity and meeting climate change targets.

With a focus on quality the launch of Woodsure’s quality assurance scheme on the day of the conference was very timely

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Presentations also covered case studies, technical innovations and a briefing by Ofgem on the Biomass Suppliers List and sustainability criteria for RHI.

The National Wood Fuel Conference 2015, was held at Epsom Downs Racecourse on the 15th of October and will be back there again on the 13th October 2016 — mark the diary now !

To read the speaker presentations from the conference visit: www.woodfuelconference.co.uk