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Wood pellet market showed rapid growth in Europe and North America in 2015

Pellet market showed rapid growth in Europe

World pellet industry has grown significantly within past several years. Wood pellets became major fuel in a number of countries. The biggest boom of pellet consumption was registered in the European countries, which is connected with extended state subsidies and new climate goals.

European wood pellet market

The massive growth of pellet industry all over the world has been marked since 2000. In accordance with figures, announced during this year's European Pellet Conference, approximately 1.7 million tonnes of wood pellets were consumed in 2000, while in 2013 there were 24.5 million tonnes consumed. In 2014, this number reached 27 million tonnes and about 28 million tonnes of wood pellets were produced in 2015. This number includes 15 million tonnes of pellets used for heating and 13 million tonnes burnt at industrial power plants.

Furthermore, the most noticeable increase has been taking place in the European Union. Recent data reveals that in 2014 European countries produced 50 per cent of global pellet production. That is to say, that 13.5 million tonnes of worldwide 27 million tonnes of wood pellets were made by the European countries.

The main European producer of pellets is Germany. It is estimated that in 2014 about 2.1 million tonnes were produced in this countries. Germany shares leadership with such European countries as Sweden, Latvia and Austria. During the same period the produced 1.6 million, 1.3 million and 948,000 tonnes respectively.

These four leaders along with other European countries contributed to the growth of pelleting industry by 35 per cent during the period between 2010 and 2014. The most rapid growth was marked between 2013 and 2014: the production of wood pellets increased by 11 per cent. Sergey Kozlov, the leading analyst of Ukrainian Biofuel Portal considers that the growth of pellet consumption in Europe is connected with beneficial political situation in the EU.

The growth of wood pellet consumption

Wood pellets are used in the European countries for the purpose of both home heating and electricity generating by industrial power plants. In this case, the United Kingdom remains major consumer of pellets. First of all, it is connected with the governmental policy, which includes subsidies and state support for power plants, which are driven by biomass. That is why several coal-fired power plants are converting their units to biomass.

The United Kingdom is followed by such countries as Italy, Sweden, Denmark, Germany, Belgium and the Netherlands. Two last countries along with the UK utilize wood pellets mostly in order to generate electricity at power stations. At the same time, Italy and Germany use pellets in large part for heating purposes. In these countries pellets become more and more popular since their governments have imposed high taxes for gas, oil and coal. In general, the share of the European Union in the global pellet consumption reaches approximately 80 per cent.

The second biggest region in terms of wood pellet consumption is North America. Its share is equal to 11 per cent of worldwide biomass consumption. The USA is a regional leader. According to the US Department of Agriculture, the growth of pellet consumption in 2014 was estimated at 14 per cent, which was twice as much as five years ago.

The consumption of wood pellets is also rapidly growing in the Asian countries, where Japan and South Korea are the major buyers of pellets. For instance, in 2014 South Korea consumed 1.9 million tonnes of biomass. In 2012, this number equated only 200,000 tonnes. However, the volume of pellet import decreased significantly in 2015. Only 126,000 tonnes have been consumed by South Korea this year.

The main exporters of wood pellets

The increase of demand for wood pellets all over the world stimulates the growth of trade. The USA and Canada are the world biggest exporters of pellets at present. As for the figures, in 2013 the USA alone exported 2.77 million tonnes of wood pellets to the European Union. The value of volume exported was estimated $347 million. The US Department of Agriculture also announced that the cost of shipments is expected to reach $1 billion by 2020. Canada, which follows the USA, is also increasing. Due to British Columbia, which is the main pellet producing region in the country, Canadian exports in 2013 were twice as much as it was in 2011. In the first half of 2015, this number increased by 1 per cent in comparison with the previous year and reached about 780,000 tonnes due to the shipments to the UK. At the same time, the volume of shipments to Italy and Asian countries has decreased significantly.

In summary, world wood pellet market has been rapidly growing for several past years. The European Union is the biggest consumer of biomass in the world. It is connected with state policy, which includes subsidies for pellet industry and high taxes for fossil fuels, as well as with new climate goals. Therefore, pellet export is also increasing at present, due to the growing demand for this product. North America is the world leader of this sector. What is more, it is expected that new big exporters of wood pellets are to appear soon.

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Wood pellet market showed rapid growth in Europe and North America in 2015


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Views: 2976 Added: 30-12-2015