Forisk Adds Cogeneration, Thermal Facilities and Urban Wood Use to Tracking of Bioenergy Sector

4 10 2011

This year, Amanda Lang, our Director of Wood Bioenergy Research, has led efforts to enhance the investment-relevant insights from Wood Bioenergy US, the Forisk publication that tracks all announced and operating wood-using bioenergy projects in the US.  As of the September 2011 issue, key additions include:

  1. Forisk separated cogeneration and thermal project types.  Previously, these projects were included in the electricity category.
  2. Urban wood was added as a feedstock type alongside forest materials and mill residues.

Wood Bioenergy US now tracks 467 projects that could consume 134.1 million tons of wood per year by 2021.  However, Forisk screening indicates 48% of this demand fails basic tests of investment and operational viability. Forisk’s improvements help timberland investors, energy developers and forest industry managers to assess project viability based on technology and project development milestones. [Click here for the free September summary.]

Cogeneration is the simultaneous production of electricity and useful heat from the same fuel source. Sixty projects in the database qualify as cogeneration and could consume 15 million green tons of wood by 2021. Twenty small-scale thermal projects, that generate steam or heat, could consume less than one million green tons per year. Urban wood feedstocks represent 8% of the 134.1 million green tons of wood that could be consumed by bioenergy projects by 2021.

“We want to realistically capture wood biomass market development,” said Amanda Lang. “These changes make our bioenergy project tracking more accurate. For example, cogeneration projects generate not only electricity, but also heat energy that can be used to power manufacturing facilities or heat buildings. The economics and efficiencies of cogeneration projects differ from pure electricity plants; by separating cogeneration projects, we can more accurately describe the bioenergy end-markets for wood.”

Forisk now tracks 3,196 wood-using locations in the United States, providing the most current, ongoing analysis of US wood demand and forest industry health available.  Click here for more information.

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