WIT Press

Sustainability Of Combustion And Incineration Of Renewable Fuels: Example Of Sweden


Free (open access)





Page Range

3 - 13




467 kb

Paper DOI



WIT Press


R. Sjöblom


According to the statistics at the EC Commission, Sweden is the Champion by far in Europe in terms of renewable energy. It comprised around 45% of the total in the year 2008. This position has been reached by a combination of natural resources, political determination and technology development. A major contributor to this is the extensive utilization of district heating which amounts to around 50 TWh per year, and which covers about half of the total need for industrial and domestic buildings. The district heating is based mainly on combustion of bio fuels together with waste and some peat. This practice is generally very positive from a sustainability perspective for the following reasons: (1) bio fuels are renewable, and so is peat, although over a longer time span; (2) waste is being recovered for energy purposes; and (3) ash material is, in many cases, re-circulated and recycled. However, sustainability is not only about total percentages, but also on the quality in the processes, especially in terms of qualification of fuels and ashes and the associated possibilities for more efficient combustion and incineration processes as well as ash utilization. Efficiency in this regard of course also includes protection of health and the environment. These aspects are explored in a technical as well as a legal perspective, and some possibilities for further development and improvement are identified and discussed. The compilation and analyses are based on more than ten years of research reports (mostly in Swedish) financed by District Heating in Sweden (Svensk Fjärrvärme), [The Swedish] Thermal Engineering Research Institute (Värmeforsk), the Swedish Waste Management (Avfall Sverige) and Svenska Energiaskor AB (which translates to: \“Swedish Energy Ashes Inc.”). Keywords: sustainable, combustion, incineration, bio fuels, waste, ash, Sweden.


Keywords: sustainable, combustion, incineration, bio fuels, waste, ash, Sweden.