A material flow analysis of wood and paper in Cape Town: is there potential to redirect flows in formal and informal sectors to foster use as a renewable resource?
The City of Cape Town has recently drafted an energy strategy and an integrated waste management plan. The creative implementation of these strategies requires knowledge of potential sources of energy and flows of waste. Inventories of requisite data are sparse. Wood and paper are interesting cases in point, as they are significant contributors to waste and potential energy carriers. A better knowledge of all related flows is obtained by means of a Material Flow Analysis (MFA). Data have been gathered for the fuel wood sector, the manufacturing, construction and demolition sector, the pulp and paper market, the municipal solid waste sector and the wastewater sector. Analysis shows that ∼70% of the renewable energy target of the City (10% of energy demand to be covered by renewables by 2020) could be met via the redirection of woody material flows within the Cape Metropolitan Area and the utilisation of innovative transformation technology.