Bothell, WA (PressExposure) June 13, 2013 -- The wood pellet export industry in North America has grown exponentially in a relatively short period of time. The export value has increased from an estimated 40 million dollars in 2004 to almost 400 million dollars in 2012. This fairly new trade development is the result of Europe's quest to reduce its dependence on fossil fuels and to reduce CO2 emissions. Energy generation from renewable resources has, with varying pace, gone up in all countries in the EU the past decade.
Woody biomass, including wood pellets, is one energy source that has attracted both much attention and investments in a number of countries on the European continent. With limited domestic wood raw-material sources, countries such as the UK, Belgium and the Netherlands have increasingly relied on the importation of industrial wood pellets to reduce the usage of coal at some of their power utilities. The relatively high costs for wood pellets in Europe have resulted in increased interest in importing pellets from British Columbia and the southern states of the US where wood raw-material costs are lower than in Europe.
A record volume of 3.2 million tons of pellets was exported from North America to Europe in 2012, according to the North American Wood Fiber Review (www.woodprices.com), which compiles and publishes pellet trade volumes based on surveys of pellet exporters and customs data in North America and Europe, each quarter. From the US South, shipments were up over hundred percent compared to 2011, while Canadian exports increased 25 percent year-over-year.
The expansion of pellet production has been particularly noteworthy in the US South where there have been 14 new pellet plants that are either new or planning to expand production in the coming year. Location and capacity of the new plants are reported in the latest issue of NAWFR.
This news brief is from the market report North American Wood Fiber Review (NAWFR), which has tracked wood fiber markets in the US and Canada for over 20 years. It is the only publication that includes prices for sawlogs, pulpwood, wood chips and biomass in North America. The 36-page quarterly report includes wood market updates for 15 regions on the continent in addition to the latest export statistics for sawlogs, wood pellets and wood chips.
Global Forest Industry and Forest Resource Consulting
Wood Resources International LLC (WRI), an internationally recognized forest industry consulting firm established in 1987, has successfully completed more than 200 consulting assignments in over 35 countries worldwide. The company is committed to continuing its international consulting services to the paper and wood products industries by focusing on its area of expertise: on-site evaluations of forest resources, raw material flows (logs and wood chips), forest products trade, wood cost outlook (pulpwood prices and sawlog prices) and forest industry developments worldwide. Primary regions of focus include North America, Europe (including Russia ), China and the plantation forestry sector in the Southern Hemisphere : Brazil, Chile, Uruguay, Argentina, New Zealand, Australia and South Africa.
In addition to consulting assignments, we also prepare client-specific pulpwood price and sawlog price reports for specific markets both globally and regionally.