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Newsletter from the 
Forest-based Sector Technology Platform
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issue#21
SEP-DEC 2015
Preparing for the Future with the FTP Family
FTP celebrates 10 years and a stronger European network
On 18 November 2015, on the occasion of FTP’s 10th Anniversary, FTP stakeholders active in 19 countries and representatives from the European Commission met for a day of intensive brainstorming, debate and networking. The objective was to strengthen the European dimension and to reconfirm the FTP Vision 2030 in a context of rapidly changing global conditions. 

The founders of FTP, the European industry confederations (CEPI, CEI-Bois) and forest owner associations (CEPF, EUSTAFOR) as well as invited representatives from other European Technology Platforms expressed recognition of the benefits of strengthening the whole forest-based value chain in order to create a more solid European research and innovation community. 
 
“CEPI members are committed to FTP and aware of how much it has influenced the research agenda in the EU, with benefits that are translated into real figures to fund the sector’s research and innovation activities,” highlighted Bernard de Galembert, Innovation and Bioeconomy Director of the Confederation of European Paper Industries (CEPI). “We absolutely profit from FTP’s work to create research and innovation opportunities,” added Per-Olof Wedin, President of the European State Forest Association (EUSTAFOR) and CEO of Sveaskog.  
In a forward looking perspective, Waldemar Kutt, Head of Unit, Biobased Products and Processes, DG RTD underlined: “The future looks bright for the European bioeconomy, including the forest-based value-chain. The challenge is to move from promises to real facts and figures.”  FTP’s Managing Director, Johan Elvnert, presented statistics showing growth in EU financing for implementing the Strategic Research & Innovation Agenda (SRA). He concluded that there is a growing recognition from the EU of the forest-based sector’s capacity to deliver innovative solutions to Europe’s Grand Societal Challenges. 
Building the FTP advocacy agenda together

The 10-Year Anniversary provided an opportunity for FTP to discuss actual progress until now in the activity areas identified in the SRA. Working in rotating groups, FTP stakeholders discussed potential opportunities to be exploited in the coming years. Lessons learned from the brainstorming session will guide FTP on how to set new research and innovation priorities. The input from the stakeholders will be evaluated and also serve the advocacy work within other policy contexts that potentially benefit the sector.
Special greeting from Commissioner for Research, Science and Innovation, Carlos Moedas to the “FTP Family” for its 10 years were broadcast at the cocktail reception.
Forest-based Sector Technology Platform (FTP) 10th Anniversary

FTP AC Meeting discusseed outcomes of the 10-Year Anniversary
The 36th FTP Advisory Committee (AC) Meeting took place on 19 November 2015 in Brussels with the attendance of NSG representatives from 12 countries, as well as FTP shareholders, Research Umbrella Organisations and Observers including the European Commission. During the meeting, participants discussed about the next steps of FTP’s work, exchanged information on national activities and shared experiences and evaluations about the recent events promoted by FTP: the Partnering Event and the 10-Year Anniversary.

In a brief oral presentation, Milan Grohol, Policy Officer of the DG GROW, called the attention of the AC attendants to an enhanced participation of the forest-based sector in the activities of the European Innovation Partnership on Raw Materials (EIP-RM). He mainly stressed the opportunity to present new commitments of the forest-based sector at the High Level Conference on Raw Materials. The next AC meeting will take place in Brussels, on 8 March 2016, from 10:30 to 15:30. 
VERAM project signed
With a total budget of €1.4 million to be implemented over a period of 30 months, the project Vision and Roadmap for European Raw Materials (VERAM) will deliver a Strategic 2050 Research Roadmap for Raw Materials for the EU. The term raw materials refer to wood, metals, minerals, natural rubber and industrial aggregates. 

The negotiations between the project consortium and the EC was successfully concluded in November 2015 and the grant agreement signed by the Commission in December. The kick-off meeting is planned for 26 January 2016. 

FTP’s role in this Coordination and Support Action (CSA) is to ensure that the raw material of “wood” is firmly considered and the research needs of the forest-based sector are a top priority in forthcoming EU research and innovation initiatives and in the 2050 Roadmap. 

Coordinated by the European Technology Platform on Sustainable Mineral Resources (ETP dSMR), the consortium also includes the ETP on Advanced Engineering Materials and Technologies (EuMaT), the ETP for Sustainable Chemistry (SusChem) and the European Construction Technology Platform (ECTP). The ERA-NETs WoodWisdomNet and ERA‐Min will link to national research funding activities and four well-known research institutes: D’Appolonia, FZ Juelich, Tecnalia, and VTT.
Increased industry participation at the FTP Partnering Event 2015
Organised at the Municon Conference Centre on 27 October 2015, in Munich, the FTP Partnering Event 2015 gathered nearly 100 participants, including industry, forest owners and representatives from the research community for an intensive networking day. The new Innovation Track, dedicated to introduce outstanding project ideas addressing specific industry priorities, attracted an audience with increased industry participation in comparison with previous years. According to the Chairman of FTP’s Pulp and Paper Industry Task Force, Leo Arpa, the Innovation Track provided a fruitful environment to initiate industry-driven partnerships. “However, we envision a presence of researchers and industry reaching a 50/50 balance.” In the Research Track, participants engaged in teaming up for the Horizon2020 Calls for Proposals open in 2016-2017. 
Guiding the participants in the partnering event, a Complete Manual of Call Topics for the forest-based sector was prepared by the FTP Secretariat. This compilation of about 80 Call Topics of relevance to the forest-based sector serves to guide FTP stakeholders to the most relevant Horizon2020 Calls, also giving a few hints about how to apply and therefore simplifying access to funding opportunities. 

FTP would like to express its great appreciation to the crucial contributions of Papiertechnische Stiftung (PTS) and NSG Germany in the preparations of the event. 

Follow the links to access the exclusive presentations, including the Flash Presentations held at the opening session.
Download the Complete Manual of Call Topics
FTP highlights to MEPs the role of research and innovation in the forest-based sector 
“Innovation and technology developments are essential to maintain biodiversity and create green growth in Europe at the same time,” was the main message by FTP’s Managing Director, Johan Elvnert, at the lunch seminar Forestry in the EU – A key to green growth or a threat to biodiversity? The seminar was hosted by the Swedish MEP and new Vice-Chair of the European Liberal Party (ALDE), Fredrick Federley,  and featured presentations from Lena Ek, President of Södra, Peter Wehrheim, Head of Unit Climate Finance and Deforestation of the European Commission and Sini Eräjää, EU Biomass Policy Officer of Birdlife Europe. 

Speakers highlighted the role of public funding to overcome financial bottlenecks and to develop new technologies that increase sustainability while improving profitability. At the event, that took place in the European Parliament, on 14 October 2015, the attending MEPs expressed their recognition of the significance of the forest-based sector for the European Union to achieve its climate change mitigation targets. Read more.
A new staff member joins FTP

As of October 1st, Thaís Mattos joined the FTP team in Brussels as Communication & Project Officer. Having worked several years in public affairs in the Brazilian Pulp and Paper Association (Bracelpa), Thaís has degrees in Journalism, Public Relations and she also holds an M.Sc. in Global Change Management from the Eberswalde University for Sustainable Development (HNE). Thaís will be in charge of FTP’s outreach activities, including the FTP website and external communications, as well as other initiatives to enhance FTP’s visibility and intensify collaboration among the NSGs and other stakeholders. Her email is thais.mattos@forestplatform.org and telephones are: 32 (0) 2 239 2308 and +32 (0) 484 90 44 09

Industry 4.0, the main theme of the European Paper Week 2015
More than 400 industry representatives participated in the 17th edition of the European Paper Week (EPW), 17 – 19 November 2015. With Industry 4.0 being the overriding theme of the event, the renowned economist Jeremy Rifkin provided inspiring reflections about the ongoing transformation of the industry in his keynote speech. Following an energetic dialogue with Commissioner Vice-President Maroš Šefčovič, Rifkin presented his theory of the Zero Marginal Cost Society. Listen to the dialogue and keynote speech.
This EPW also registered an impressive participation of prominent speakers and guests including the Commissioner for Digital Economy & Society, Gunther Oettinger, the Commissioner for Agriculture and Rural Development, Phil Hogan, and the former Prime Minister of Belgium and former President of the European Council, Herman Van Rompuy. Read more.
The Age of Fiber

With a dedicated publication that presents the most innovative products of the pulp and paper industry and an exhibition that ran throughout the EPW 2015, the pulp and paper industry announced that The Age of Fibre has begun. The publication is the third in a series of initiatives that started with the 2050 Roadmap (2011), followed by the Two Team Project (2013).
Download "The Age of Fibre"
€1.2 billion bio-product mill investment presented at the Bioeconomy Investment Summit 
The business case of the new bio-product mill of Metsä Fibre, to be located in Äänekoski, Finland, was showcased as an inspiring example of a growing bioeconomy at the Bioeconomy Investment Summit in Brussels. In the panel session From Forestry to New Bio-Based Products the need to further strengthen and invest into traditional forest industry and products, such as the woodworking industry, was highlighted by Aljoscha Requardt, CEPF Secretary General. The impact of a growing bioeconomy on the environment and the society was further debated by representatives from Södra Cell, Metsä Fibre, Arizona Chemicals and FERN. The Commissioner for Research, Innovation and Science, Carlos Moedas, stressed in his speech that “the bioeconomy must go from niche to norm to create employment, diversify Europe’s energy sources and increase industry-driven GDP.” A video streaming to the event is available here.
Forest-based sector included in the 4th SCAR Foresight  Study
FTP has been one of the organisations invited to provide input to the 4th Foresight Study under the leadership of the Standing Committee on Agricultural Research (SCAR). This study explores some likely scenarios of a paradigm shift to the bioeconomy, also considering the limits posed by sustainability. The outcomes were presented at the conference Sustainable Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries in the Bioeconomy – A Challenge for Europe that took place in Brussels on 8 October 2015. Info-graphics detailing the scenarios developed are available for download.

The 4th SCAR Foresight Study takes the role of forests and the forest-based value-chain significantly more into account than previous SCAR foresight studies. Nevertheless, FTP will continue its advocacy work to ensure that the principles of cascading use and perceived conflict between bioenergy and bio-products are not oversimplified and better represent the ideas and expectations of the stakeholders in the forest-based sector. 

SCAR was established in 1974 and since its re-launch in 2005, it has become a major source of advice on European agricultural and wider bioeconomy research.
Bio-based sector listed among the priorities of the EC’s new Circular Economy Package 
Biomass and bio-based materials are among the priority sectors of the new Circular Economy Package announced on 2 December 2015 by the European Commission (EC). The Action Plan on the new Circular Economy Package gives evidence of the EC interest in promoting innovation in the bio-based sector. The text highlights the importance of bio-based materials as a crucial alternative to fossil-based products and stresses that the sector’s potential for innovation in new materials, chemicals and processes can be integrated into the circular economy. FTP will follow up likely announcements, calls for proposals, or next steps associated with the Circular Economy Package that potentially can benefit the forest-based sector. 

As defined by the EC, in a circular economy, recyclable materials are injected back into the economy as new raw materials thus increasing the security of supply. Built upon this pillar, the Circular Economy Package aims at facilitating the transition of European businesses and consumers to “a stronger and more circular economy where resources are used in a more sustainable way.”

Heiko Thömen is the new Chair of FTP’s NSG in Switzerland
Appointed as the new chairman of NSG Switzerland, Heiko Thömen also assumes the chairmanship of the Board of Presidents of the Swiss Wood Innovation Network (S-WIN). Thömen is a Professor and course director of the master study programme on Wood Technology at Bern University of Applied Sciences, Department of Architecture, Wood and Civil Engineering, in Switzerland.
NSG Sweden hosted a National Research Agenda Day
The Swedish National Research Agenda Day (NRA Day) took place on 23 September 2015, in Stockholm, and gathered relevant representatives including policy makers, research funding providers, the research community, forest owners and forest-based industries to debate the role of the forest-based value chain in growing the bioeconomy. At the event, FTP presented a European dimension to the topic. The Swedish Forest Industries Federation introduced the sector’s new vision in a two-minute film that emphasises the potential of forests to drive growth in the world’s bioeconomy. The participation of the Swedish forest-based sector in other national initiatives that support innovation, such as the Innovation Race and the Ekoportal2035, a web portal that showcases some 60 new and innovative ideas, were presented at the event. 
The Swedish Forest Industries Vision September 2015

Industry calls for a COP21 agreement that recognises forests and the forest-based sector in mitigating climate change
Leading global forest companies expressed their ambition to address climate change through increasing global forest cover and the use of forest products. On 1 December 2015, date of the thematic day of forests of the 21st Conference of the Parties (COP21) of the United Nations Framework Conference on Climate Change (UNCCC) held in Paris, the group announced that around 638 Gt of carbon is currently stored in forests worldwide, an amount higher than the total carbon in the entire atmosphere. This provides proof of the efficiency of forests and forest products to act as carbon sinks. Together under the Low Carbon Technology Partnerships initiative (LCTPi) of the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD), the group of companies wants to raise a voice in favour of recognising the sector as a key enabler of climate change mitigation. They advocate for a climate agreement that scales up sustainable forest management and replaces energy intensive products by forest-based products that store carbon.
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