The 2023 CONFOR Woodland Show brought foresters, woodland managers and tree workers of all kinds together at the Royal Bath and West showground last week. Nicholas Allison from the North Wyke Biomass Connect Hub Site at Rothamsted Research in Devon was there to represent the Biomass Connect team and to spread the word about our hubs and website.
There was a lot of enthusiasm at the show for more ambitious and effective tree and forestry policy at the Government level, ideally reconciling the ambitions of the Forestry Commission with those of the Woodland Trust, increasing both productivity and conservation. Nicholas was able to make the point to policymakers and industry influencers that Short Rotation Forestry and Coppice production need to be part of national woodland and forestry policy if land management is to become part of the solution and help achieve Net Zero by 2050.
At a more down-to-earth level, Nicholas reported that he had some great conversations with dynamic small and medium-sized arboriculture and forestry company owners who are already taking advantage of opportunities presented by the emerging biomass industry. Demand is strong for biomass chip as boiler fuel, and chip producers were generally interested to hear about the Biomass Feedstocks Initiative projects and the early signs of a new industry that will use biomass as a raw material for building materials, plastics and other products.
Here are a few photos of Nick spreading the word about Biomass Connect at the CONFOR Woodland show 2023.