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CO₂emissions and residues of Amazon rainforest lumber - preliminary results



Author(s): E. Ferraz De Campos, V.M. John
Paper category: symposium
Book title: International Symposium on Life Cycle Assessment and Construction – Civil engineering and buildings
Editor(s): A. Ventura and C. de la Roche
Print ISBN: 978-2-35158-127-8
e-ISBN: 978-2-35158-128-5
Publisher: RILEM Publications SARL
Pages: 274 – 282
Total Pages: 9
Language: English


Abstract: Environmental data of products are essential for sustainability management in construction. Amazon lumber production involves selective logging, sawing and transportation, all impacting the carbon balance. This research aims to quantify CO2 emissions of Amazon lumber products from non-managed forests. The Amazon rainforest is composed of many species of trees, but just 3 to 9 trees per hectare or 4.8% to 8.6% of the total biomass are commercially attractive. In accessing these sparsely scattered commercial logs up to 33% of the aboveground forest biomass is destroyed. Converting logs into lumber averages 41% and wood residues are usually burned or left to decay, adding to the release of carbon. The residues produced by selective logging and sawing are 5.5 to 9.6 times superior to lumber mass. The use of energy in lumber production reduces the carbon incorporated in wood from 5% to 19%. Total CO2 emissions are composed of logging residues (79.5%); sawing residues (18.4%) and energy (1.9%). A range in emissions of 6.4tCO2/m³ to 11.3tCO2/m³ for lumber production was found. Total residues generated vary between 5.5 t/t to 9.6 t/t or 9.5 tCO2/t to 16.5 tCO2/t of commercial lumber. This data can integrate a construction material database to support consumer and professional decisions on Amazon wood applications.

Keywords: wood, carbon, Amazon rainforest, selective logging, construction, material flow analysis


Online publication: 2012
Publication Type: full_text
Public price (Euros): 0.00