Forest2Market News for the Global Bioenergy & Biomaterials Sectors
US Wood Pellet Exports Increased 17% in 2018

By John Greene
Per recent data released by the USDA Foreign Agricultural Service (FAS), the US exported over 6 million metric tons of wood pellets in 2018, which was up roughly 17 percent versus to the 5.1 million metric tons exported in 2017. The FAS data also estimated that the total value of these exports increased nearly 22%, from $666 million in 2017 to $812 million in 2018.

Japanese Demand for Wood Pellets Largely Fulfilled by North American Producers

By Stan Parton
Japan's consumption of wood pellets continues to increase significantly in the wake of the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster in 2011, as its government has targeted a “best energy mix” of roughly 4 GW of biomass-fired capacity by 2030. By then, Japanese demand for wood pellets will be upwards of 15 million tons per year—a staggering 3,000% increase from its consumption of roughly 500,000 tons in 2017.

At Issue: The Renewable Fuel Standard and Small Refinery Waivers

By Suz-Anne Kinney
In 2007, when Congress passed and President Bush signed the Energy Independence and Security Act (EISA), the renewable biofuels industry was in its infancy. Outside of corn ethanol, most pathways for the production of renewable fuels were still in development, and producers were operating in pre-commercial demonstration facilities. In order to account for this uncertainty in the timeline for moving from developing to proven technologies and processes, EISA provided EPA with the legislative authority to waive Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) requirements under certain circumstances.

Pellets & Pulp: The Changing Nature of the Southern Residuals Market

By Thomas Bennett
Demand for softwood fiber has increased substantially over the last decade. The rise of the European wood pellet industry has resulted in 10 million additional tons of fiber demand, much of which is being supplied from the softwood resource in the US South. During the same period, demand for fluff pulp for absorbent products has spawned new southern pulp production. The recovering economy along with the migration to online retailing has increased demand for cardboard boxes that are principally fulfilled by the southern pine pulp industry.

Renewable Fuel Standards Set for 2019

By Suz-Anne Kinney
On November 30, 2018, EPA published the final rule for Renewable Fuel Standards (RFS) for 2019. These requirements, outlined in the table below, have been increased for cellulosic biofuel, advanced biofuel and renewable fuel.