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Reed thatched roofs - durable and rich in shapes. Builder's instructions.

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Concepts for using reed biomass-documentary

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Blog Link: Reed Blog (Finnish)


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Sustainable and local renewable energy from reed

Reed biomass can be used as local source of bioenergy. Utilization of the reed beds benefit the local environment, biodiversity, landscape values and recreational uses. Bioenergy production can also spark new economic opportunities and stimulate entrepreneurship.


Cofreen's energy brochure can be dowloaded here. (In finnish)

In this video you can see how Common reed is utilized for energy! Video is produced by the Pure Biomass-project.


Dry reed harvested during winter is well suited for combustion, either as is or combined with other materials. Common reed has a comparable energy density with other grass biomass, such as cultivated reed canary grass (Phalaris arundinacea).

Immaterial benefits

The current price of energy doesn't cover the costs from harvesting, transporting and shredding of reed. Therefore reed cannot be used in an economically viable way as a biofuel if taking only the material benefits into account. Nevertheless the harvesting of reed creates many immaterial benefits, which can be worthwhile and in some places even necessary. The immaterial benefits gained from carefully executed reed harvesting promote:

  • water conservation
  • recreational use
  • landscape value
  • biodiversity.

The naturally renewable material obtained with these measures is profitable to use as biofuel, unless the quality of material is good enough for construction use. As a whole, the use of reed as an energy source can be considered lucrative, when taking into account also the values that are more difficult to evaluate.



Moisalo, Mikko. 2011. Utilizing winter reed as local bioenergy (in Finnish)

Helle, Solja. 2011. Using a Decomissioned Waste Water Treatement Facility in Reed Pelleting (Finnish)

Videsprojekti. The Development of Technology Chain for Reed Usage for Biogas and Organic Fertilizers Production in Lake Pape Area (English Summary)

Videsprojekti. Common reed biomass opportunities for production of biofuel pellets and briquettes (English Summary)