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An Energy Company becomes a Farmer
The board of the Enköping energy company, one of the cases for study in the Bioenergy NoE's Environment and Socio-Economics Research Area, took a dramatic step in December. Instead of only buying bioenergy from farmers growing energy forests, the board decided the company itself should do the farming. The company is now going to lease land and operate energy farms by themselves. Enköping got involved in energy farming because the rate of contracting farmers for future energy deliveries was too slow. Expectations are that the costs to the energy company will be lower than the prices otherwise paid to farmers. The removal of market risks appears as the most important success factor. Evaluation of real costs will not be possible until the first harvest in four years. In the context of our NoE work package this is a successful example of improving supply-chain co-ordination. In relation to the analysis of barriers in agriculture, the company intends to contribute to establishing a tradition of the kind of long-term land-lease contracts necessary for energy forest investments.
Tomas Kåberger firstname.lastname@example.org, Leader of the NoE's Environment and Socio-Economics Research Area.
More on this case is in a forthcoming paper entitled Exploring a Pioneering Bioenergy System: The Case of Enköping in Sweden By Kes McCormick & Tomas Kåberger in Journal of Cleaner Production.