WBA releases pellet factsheet
WBA is pleased to announce the launch of the fact sheet: Pellets – a fast growing energy carrier. The pellet factsheet is the 6th in a series of documents intended to be utilized by the media and industry as verifiable, easily referenced source of information. This factsheet provides an overview of pellets, their properties, production of pellets in large and small scale technologies, pellet equipment including boilers and stoves, and the economics of pellets.
The WBA believes that pellets have the potential to become a fuel with a significant importance in the global energy balance. The availability of wood (a major feedstock for pellets) as raw material is substantial and could be further extended by the establishment of plantations of fast growing trees. Also, the possibility of using agricultural by-products offers a vast amount of resources.
“Pellets are a well packaged bioenergy carrier – they have high energy content, standardized properties and are easy to transport long distances. The use of sustainably produced pellets to replace fossil fuels is environmentally and economically attractive. There has been a tremendous growth in pellet production and use in the past decade and they will play a vital role in climate change mitigation and energy security”, says Dr. Heinz Kopetz, President, WBA.
In terms of economics, though pellets are more expensive than coal, they are cheaper than heating oil. The use of pellets instead of coal for generating heat is economic on its own while the electricity generation needs to be supported. The main pellet producing regions in 2014 are Europe and North America. WBA expects a strong growth in pellet consumption in Europe, North America and Asia.
In the situation where the world is facing climate problems and energy security issues, the WBA favours farsighted government policies such as carbon taxes and financial incentives to promote the use of pellets for combined heat and power and/or heat alone applications. This would reduce the heating expenses for the citizens, decrease the CO2 emissions and improve energy security.