The circular bioeconomy offers solutions to curb the effects of climate change by focusing on the use of renewable, biological resources to produce food, energy, materials, and services. The substitution of fossil products by wood-based products can help avoid or reduce greenhouse gas emissions over the life cycle of products. However, it is important to understand the potential impacts of large-scale material substitution at the market level. This study aimed to assess the role of selected wood-based products in the circular bioeconomy, the possible changes in their markets, and investigate which elements could ensure the environmental sustainability of these products. The demand for graphic paper has declined over the last 15 years, while the demand for packaging has increased. Cross-laminated timber and man-made cellulosic fibres have seen their global consumption increase over the last decade. While there are benefits associated with the substitution of non-renewable materials by wood-based products, there is still limited understanding of the substitution effects at market-, country- and global level. Some factors enabling the further uptake of wood-based products include initiatives that stimulate technological change, incentives to produce or consume less fossil-based and more bio-based alternatives, and the promotion and marketing of wood-based products as viable alternatives to non-renewable materials.
Reference: Hassegawa M, Van Brusselen J, Cramm M, Verkerk PJ. Wood-Based Products in the Circular Bioeconomy: Status and Opportunities towards Environmental Sustainability. Land. 2022; 11(12):2131. https://doi.org/10.3390/land11122131