NRP 12 "Wood as Renewable Raw Material and Energy Source"

There was a need to ensure that the Swiss forestry sector was able to meet the country’s supply requirements for the next century, with optimised self-management of forestry operations, while maintaining sustainability and improving protective and welfare effects.

The Swiss forestry and wood processing industry should be capable of providing the country with a sustainable supply of the wood products that are vital to the lives of its population and suitable in terms of their technical characteristics, providing the wood industry operations with secure revenues.

The importance of potential developments in the area of energy supply for the Swiss wood and forestry sector was to be clarified by means of scientific research. The National Research Programme “Wood as Renewable Raw Material and Energy Source” (NRP 12) supported research in these three core area (supply requirements, vital wood products, and energy), the findings from which would ensure that the supply of wood as a renewable raw material and source of energy could be secured for the future.

Expansion of deforestation would have a significant impact on the situation of the wood and forestry sector. Accordingly, particular attention was paid in the scope of NRP “Wood” to the economic, forestry policy and legal consequences of this phenomenon.
The increase in funding approved by the Federal Council in 1987 allowed the research to be extended in the area of fir and beech, and in the area of optimisation.

Facts & figures

Overall grant

CHF 11,000,000

President of the Expert Group

Maurice Cosandey

Programme Director

Andreas Hurst

Completion of research work


Final reports

  • Andreas Hurst: Holz, erneuerbare Rohstoff- und Energiequelle. SAH-Bulletin, 1991
  • Werner Catrina: Holzwege. Schweizer Holz - verkannter Rohstoff. Orell Füssli, Zürich, 1989.
  • Pierre Thomas, Werner Catrina: La Suisse au bois dormant - une matière méconnue. Georg Editeur Genève. 1990.