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2014 Forisk Wood Bioenergy Project Rankings

This post includes an excerpt from the feature article in the January/February 2014 edition of Wood Bioenergy US (WBUS) that ranks currently operating biomass plants and states based on wood-using capacity.

The current issue of Wood Bioenergy US (WBUS) includes Forisk’s 2014 Wood Bioenergy Project Rankings.  The rankings highlight successes in a sector that saw new project announcements fall from 139 in 2010 to 19 in 2013.  During this period, WBUS identified 96 cancelled wood bioenergy projects in the U.S. This article ranks viable project activities based on their size and location by subsector.  Rankings confirm the leading roles played by the power and pellet sub sectors.  In the wood-to-electricity and power sector, plants captured in the top ten rankings account for 30% of the wood-using capacity of the power sector’s total wood use.  For the pellet sector, the top ten plants account for 9.2 million tons of wood-using capacity and 46% of the pellet sector’s total wood use.  For biofuels, fewer than ten plants actually use wood at this time, and one plant accounts for 85% of the biofuel sector’s wood use.

The rankings include top ten states based on wood energy generation and the potential to use wood over the next ten years. Regionally, the South generally has the largest operating plants, while most wood energy generation currently occurs in the North.  Southern states top the list for future wood use for bioenergy applications.

WBUS Market Update:  As of December 2013, WBUS counts 442 announced and operating wood bioenergy projects in the U.S. with total, potential wood use of 122.6 million tons per year by 2023.  Based on Forisk analysis, 290 projects representing potential wood use of 80.9 million tons per year pass basic viability screening.  To download the free WBUS summary, click here.

Forisk made two improvements to WBUS. First, wood use estimates are now reported separately for softwood pulpwood, hardwood pulpwood and logging residues. Second, wood use projections in the free WBUS summary now account for ramp-up time by including half of stated capacity in the start year of a project and full capacity assumed in year two of operations.

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