Lithuanian National Committee (Lietuviskos durpes)

Chair 

Giedrius Kavaliauskas
IPS Lithuanian National Committee
Kauno g. 17
LT-53387 Ezerelis, Kauno rajonas
LITHUANIA
phone: +370 375 34260
e-mail: giedrius.kavaliauskas (at) klasmann-deilmann.com

Secretariat

Giedrius Giparas 
IPS Lithuanian National Committee
Lithuanian peat producers association
A.Vienuolio g. 8
01104 Vilnius
LITHUANIA
e-mail: giedrius.giparas(at)asocdurpes.lt
www.asocdurpes.lt

Ugne Radziunaite
IPS Lithuanian National Committee

Lithuanian peat producers association
A.Vienuolio g. 8
01104 Vilnius
LITHUANIA
e-mail: ugne.radziunaite(at)lpk.lt

Annual Report 2014

Organizational changes

Mr Giedrius Kavaliauskas was re-elected President of the Lithuanian Peat Producers Association for a second term. Mr Giedrius Giparas was elected new Director of the Lithuanian Peat Producers Association. He can be contacted at giedrius.giparas@asocdurpes.lt.

Season

The season of 2014 was successful even though the amount of peat extracted was slightly less (2.598 million m3) than in the previous year (2.7 million m3).

New life for old peatlands

The country has launched an inventory of damaged lands, which will determine the number of degrading drained peatlands and those no longer used. It will declare what area of the total land they occupy and what their condition is. The Lithuanian Geological Survey under the Ministry of Environment of the Republic of Lithuania expects to collect these data until the end of 2015. According to the information gathered, it will be decided which of those no longer used peatlands can be used for peat extraction, and which of them need recultivation for wetland ecosystems to recover.

Peat industry specialties presented to school students

The Klasmann-Deilmann group of companies in Lithuania is actively involved with students’ professional orientation projects. The programme is dedicated to senior students in general education schools and presents them with different areas of employment, professions and career prospects. This policy of companies’ social responsibility contributes to processes of education and the motivation of young professionals, as well as to their career planning.

Fuel peats

Recently, in a climate of geopolitical tensions between East and West and a high dependence on external energy suppliers, the Ministry of Environment of the Republic of Lithuania has seen opportunities for the sustainable use of non-conventional hydrocarbons as well as for fuel peat, which Lithuania has been known for and has been using for centuries. The Vice Minister of the Ministry of Environment several times discussed the issue with the Lithuanian Peat Producers Association.

The International Biomass Energy Conference was held in November. Lithuanian and other countries’ experts presented on international and national-level biomass energy technologies, trends, political decisions, problems and prospects. In addition, the conference had a focus on local energy resources - fuel peat - as a means to increase Lithuania’s energy and economic security.

The Lithuanian Peat Producers Association is making efforts to ensure that the use of energy peat in the country reaches at least 1 TWh per year.

Prime Minister of the Republic of Lithuania praises Klasmann-Deilmann group of companies

The Prime Minister of the Republic of Lithuania expressed his personal gratitude to the Klasmann-Deilmann group of companies in Lithuania for their active involvement and contribution to the development of the regions in the country. The acknowledgment of these merits was made during the 25th anniversary of the Lithuanian Confederation of Industrialists - the biggest employers’ organization in the country.

LIFE+

June 2014 was marked by the international seminar in Aukstumale bog (Silute region), which was the first Lithuanian bog described in a scientific monograph. An event was held under the EU financial instrument LIFE+.

Replanting of Sphagnum

The company Rekyva was the first enterprise in Lithuania that undertook to restore depleted peatlands by employing a method involving the intensive artificial replanting of Sphagnum. Such Sphagnum planted areas are annually recovering a 5-7 cm layer of peat and ensuring a natural peat bog development process that utilizes the same vegetation that used to grow there before the harvesting of the peatland.

This kind of recultivation work was first launched in the peat bog of Rekyva in spring 2014. Peat moss (Sphagnum) was planted in an area of 0.5 ha. Employees of the company have made use of the Canadian experience - over 3,000 hectares of peat extraction fields in that country have already been successfully rehabilitated using this method. The initial results received by the Rekyva through its Sphagnum replanting operations also allow for an optimistic outlook.

It is important to note that the abovementioned approach that Rekyva is applying allows for a significant reduction in the greenhouse effect, and ensures that the process is safe and natural, and moreover that the natural environment with the specific flora and fauna that existed before the bog harvesting operations is restored and preserved for future generations.

Annual Report 2012

The Lithuanian National Committee of IPS arranged the following activities in 2012:

• A reporting meeting of the Association was organized.

• An International forum with the Lithuanian Confederation of Industrialists was held on the topic “Peat industry and its perspectives”

• A law amendment on the fire safety rules for peat bogs was made, which was agreed upon in all Governmental institutions.

• A contract was signed with the scientists of Kaunas Institute of Technology about the study preparation on the development of fuel peat usage in the Lithuanian energy sector. Various works of regulation with the Government have been started.

• A newly prepared peat accounting methodology was agreed upon in the Lithuanian geology service.

• Participation in the IPS Congress in Stockholm.

• Participation in the Forum “Baltic Peat Producers”, Tallinn.

• Intensive discussions on energy issues with governmental institutions have been started.

• On October 19, 2012 EPAGMA confirmed the membership of the Lithuanian Peat Producers Association.

• Participation in an EPAGMA meeting in Brussels.

• Discussions of the Baltic States’ associations of peat companies about IPS strategy, supported by EPAGMA works, i.e. the certification system “Responsible peat production”, in Riga.

• A meeting with Estonian geologists was organized in Vilnius. Information and experiences were shared.

• On 14th December – final meeting of the association members.

• Christmas period, greetings.

 

Annual Report 2011

Summary of Lithuanian peat companies’ association “Lithuanian Peat” works of 2011:

  • Various questioning actions in the Parliament, Government about the government’s proposal to increase the peat resources fee by 3.2 times.
  • Actions with the EU Lithuanian members of parliament about the acknowledgement of peat resources as a slowly renewable natural raw material.
  • Articles, speeches on the radio, television and other public space about the problems of the peat industry.
  • Discussions in Lithuanian industrialists’ confederation, Parliament about the amendment project of the Law on Earth Depths Rent, which is unfavorable for peat companies.
  • Acceptance of new members into the association: these are four Lithuanian peat extraction companies and one foreign – German geological research company..
  • Reporting meeting of the association members.
  • Prepared economic assessment peat business study and presented to the association members and the Government.
  • Association website was renewed.
  • Association attributes produced – association logo metal badges.
  • Started preparation of study about the improvement, amendment of fire protection normative legal acts for peat companies and their adjustment with responsible institutions.
  • Contacts with the Greens movement and their financial support.
  • Preparation and participation in the forum of Baltic countries in Riga.
  • United conference with “Achema” concern group about more intensive use of fuel peat as energy raw material in Lithuania.
  • Visit and congratulation of Estonian peat industry on the 150th anniversary of peat industry.
  • Prof. Jurgis Vidmantas’ honor nomination awards for the most worthy employees of Lithuanian peat companies.
  • Final 2011 meeting of association members.
  • Christmas period, greetings.

Association’s executive director
Juozas Daukantas

Annual Report 2010

Several important events were carried out by the Association “Lietuviškos durp?s“ in 2010. 

General Meeting of the Association members was held in the beginning of March. Due to economic crisis, two companies left the Association in the beginning of the year therefore association did not received planned revenue and in the beginning of the year association started with extra activities when preparing for organization of a traditional Baltic Peat Forum.
The Association had 13 members in 2010.

During the course of the year, urgent problems of peat industry companies and actions planned were tackled in the Association Board meetings which were convened every quarter. In one of such meetings held on 31 May Eugenijus Strašinskas, the General Director of peat company “Ežer?lio durp?s“, was honoured on his 60th anniversary and awarded a medal of famous Lithuanian peat industry worker and scientist prof. Jurgis Vidmantas, issued by the Association.

On the Governmental level of the Republic of Lithuania Association took part in meetings together with Associations of other industries, which were attended by the Government, the Parliament members and other executives of the country. There were active attempts to include peat into a Governmental program on the national development of the use of energy from renewable sources for 2010 – 2020, so that a share of renewable energy sources would reach 23 percent of the country’s total energy consumption in 2020 and peat as slowly renewable raw material would be used in biofuel mass. Yet, due to the concept of “biomass” included into the Directive 2009/28/EB of the European Parliament and of the Council dated 23 April 2009, peat was recognised as natural material of biological origin, and we did not succeed to be included into the Governmental energy program.

With the above situation possibilities for fuel peat usage in energy sector are very limited.

Another issue solved with the Association’s efforts was the decision of the government to treat peat industry as a branch of agricultural industry when it comes to employment during the seasonal work period. Employees of peat extraction companies were allowed to work up to 12 hours per day during the said period without violating the stated annual total working time calculation. The said decision enables peat companies to reduce hiring unprepared labourers from the labour exchange during the working season.

A great deal of effort was required for work in the Parliament regarding a proposal of Seym to increase the tax on peat resources 5.32 times, though the tax has already been increased before and it came into force as since 1 January 2010. So far, an agreement was reached that the tax draft proposed is not well-grounded and requires additional analysis. Members of Peat Producers Association are concerned about the future discussions regarding the tax increase, having in mind that with the country’s budget deficit it is hard to discuss with state institutions with the help of arguments.

Therefore, the Association started preparing an exhaustive study of peat industry in Lithuania, which is expected to contribute to providing more counterarguments to the Parliament.
What is more, the Baltic Peat Forum held on 2-4 September in Druskininkai under the subject “Alternative Usage of Peat” was the most important event in the Association’s activity in 2010.
The Forum received a great interest from participants, i.e. about 190 people from Lithuania, Estonia, Latvia, Germany, the Netherlands, Belarus, Israel, the Czech Republic, Finland and other countries took part in it. According to participants, this Forum was the most numerous in terms of the number of guests.

11 presentations were delivered during the Forum (all presentations can be found in association website www.asocdurpes.lt). Participants also had an opportunity to see a fen under restoration.
We provoke interest in many foreign companies to support the Forum organization, some of them subsequently expressed a wish to become members of Lithuanian Peat Producers Association, such as Dutch company Slootweg Macchinefabriek, etc.

You can find more information about the Association, its members and events in our updated website www.asocdurpes.lt.

Annual Report 2008

The Lithuanian Peat Producers’ Association Lithuanian Peat held held a number of important meetings in 2008. In March, the general meeting of the members of the Association was held. The President Mr. Albinas Cernauskas presented the Annual Report of activities of the Association. The attendants also approved the budget, re-elected the members of the council, discussed the topicality and elected the auditor.

The second meeting of the Association was organized in June 2008. Dr. Remigijus Simasius, Director of the Free Market Institute, introduced activities, goals and cooperation possibilities with the Lithuanian Peat Association. The Institute offered scientific research and the introduction of Lithuanian Peat to different governmental institutions. This step is very important in solving the problem of subsidising diesel fuel for the Association members. Business development consultant Mr. Mykolas Trunce, introduced a labour training project funded by the EU.

Members also discussed EPAGMA (European Peat and Growing Media Association) activities in Brussels and its cooperation with Lithuanian peat producers. Moreover, a new company, JSC Rekyva joined the Association.  

Finally, every Tuesday the President and the Director of Lithuanian Peat participated, generally with other industries’ associations, in lobby meetings, where governmental, parliamentarians and other competent state officers are invited to discuss particular laws and appeals to the government on various topics important for the industry.

The most important plan for the Lithuanian Peat Producers’ Association 2009 is to discuss with the government how to improve the business environment for fuel peat. Fuel peat, large amounts of which are imported from Belarus to Lithuania, is currently not regarded as a renewable fuel.