Technological Developments in Forestry and Wood-Based Industry in Germany: Assessment of Environmental Impacts

  • Project team:

    Feifel, Silke (Dissertation)

  • Start date: 2006
  • End date:


  • Research group: Sustainability and environment

Project description

In Germany, an increasing competition over the use of wood can be noticed. The increased importance of the resource wood is – against the background of the climate change that is taking place as well as the wish for an improved availability of domestic raw materials as energy carriers – politically intended and a declared objective of a long-term oriented energy- and environmental policy. Through the development of new technologies like, e.g., biomass to liquid processes (BtL) and new burner technologies for domestic coal which allow a more efficient use of wood as an energy carrier, the technological conditions for a broader use of wood are improved. In contrast to this, due to the long rotation cycles of wood, the wood supply remains constant in short and medium terms, and its use by the wood industry, using the wood mainly as a raw material, continues.

So far, the effects of the variable competition over the use of wood have not been examined in a coherent technology-based model with respect to Germany. A model of this type would have to take into account all types of demand and would have to consider wood-based products as well as substitute products.

The project aims at identifying and quantifying the ecological and economical medium- and long-term effects of an intensified competition concerning the use of wood which requires to analyze the corresponding changes of the material flow within the forest-wood-use chain, and to consider the different economic constraints and the innovation dynamics in selected branches of the forest-wood use chain as well as the developments of competing non-wood-based sectors.

Based on the results of the analysis, the relevance of the different constraints for the medium- and long-term development of the forest-wood system will be assessed, and incentive mechanisms for the management of material flows will be identified.

Administrative data

Supervisor: Prof. Dr. Liselotte Schebek
Advisor: Dr. Witold-Roger Poganietz
Related projects: Systems Analysis of the competing energetic and material use of wood in Germany
Doctoral students at ITAS: see Doctoral studies at ITAS


Dipl.-Ing. Silke Feifel
Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT)
Institute for Technology Assessment and Systems Analysis (ITAS)
P.O. Box 3640
76021 Karlsruhe