Stockholm, Sweden 06 June 2016 -- Södra's members are delivering increasingly higher volumes of wood to the company's industries. A focus on improved forest management has led to a steady increase in forest growth. This, in turn, has enabled more harvesting. In southern Sweden, growth is so strong that forest stocks are rising as harvesting operations increase.
"Our members are managing their forests so well that forests are now growing better than ever. And, although we continue to harvest more forest, there is still more forest remaining. This is a very positive trend," says Håkan Larsson, President of Södra Skog.
"There is so much potential for trees as a raw material and we need to use the forest more actively if we want to meet the challenges of climate change and the transition to a fossil-free society."
Most of the wood delivered by Södra's members is softwood - pine and spruce. Supplies are delivered in the form of pulpwood and sawlogs to Södra's own pulp mills and sawmills, and as biofuel to external thermal power stations.
In 2015, wood deliveries from members rose 4 percent year-on-year, and since deliveries have remained at the same level at the beginning of the current year, the increase seems stable.
In past years, Södra's members have delivered nearly 10 million cubic metres of wood annually to the company's industries. If you add up all of the volumes handled by Södra in one year (approximately 15 million cubic metres), load them on to timber trucks and line up all the trucks, the line would be 9,000 kilometres long - which is equal to the distance between Växjö and Los Angeles.
Increased wood deliveries will be particularly important in the future. When Södra's new pulp mill at Värö is completed in 2016, paper pulp production at the mill will gradually increase from 425,000 to 700,000 tonnes. This will meet customer demand for pulp while simultaneously ensuring markets for members' growing supplies of forest raw material.
"The expansion of Värö's pulp capacity will increase the need for thinning wood. Thinning operations that selectively remove trees from the forest improve the forest growth rate and strengthen our members' profitability," says Håkan Larsson.