EcoSeed notifies us of a new study on The Global Timber and Wood Products Market. The North American Wood Fiber Review informs us that woody biomass prices continue to fall in the US due to the continued surplus of natural gas. In Q2 2012, woody biomass prices were down between 2% and 10% in the key biomass-consuming regions, the US South, Northeast and in the West. Most of the decrease in wood usage the past year has been for wood used in the generation of electricity for the domestic market in the US, while the wood pellet industry has continuously expanded capacity to meet the growing demand from electric utilities in Europe.

The Star asks: Is wood the fuel of the future? Forest Fuels in Barnsley, England is finding wood chips to be a growth industry.

Korea Southern Power is buying wood pellets to meet its renewable energy quota reports Bloomberg. South Korea’s 13 electric power utilities must increase the use of renewable energy after the government imposed an alternative energy quota this year to reduce CO2 emissions. The mandatory quota for the proportion of electricity generated by renewable sources will be increased to 10% in 2022 from 2% in 2012. Utilities are purchasing wood pellets to substitute for coal because of the longer time required to develop solar and wind sources for electric power generation.

A steam plant in Oak Ridges, Tennessee is powered by wood chips says Oak Ridge Today. Meanwhile a plant fueled by wood waste is now onstream in Austin, Texas we learn from renewablesbiz.

R&D Magazine informs us that rice will be producing electricity in Cambodia. Mountains of waste rice husks will be used to power a Soma rice mill in the Kamphong Cham region of southeastern Cambodia. The 1.5 MW of electricity is generated by burning methane (a biogas) from fermented rice chaff.

A study from the University of Texas finds that 5% of residual waste from recycling facilities could power 700,000 U.S. homes. Waste Management World says American recycling facilities currently landfill between 5% and 15% of total processed of the material treated as residue. This residue is primarily composed of high energy content non-recycled plastics and fibre and could be converted into useful energy such as biogas or electricity.

The Canadian province of Ontario is converting a major electric power producer from coal to biomass says CBC. The 200 MW Aticoken plant in northwest Ontario will be burning wood pellets or biomass by 2014. See also London Free Press Ontario to convert coal-fired plant to biomass.

Environmental Leader notes the largest biomass plant in the US is now online. Southern Company’s 100 MW Nacogdoches Generating Facility is now operational and putting electricity on the grid in the state of Texas. The plant is fueled by wood-based biomass consisting primarily of saw mill or other wood mill production waste, forest waste, precommercial thinnings of cultivated trees, and diseased and other non-commercial tree species. There is also the potential for the use of urban wood waste, tree limbs and branches produced by storms and other non-commercial logging-derived biomass. See also KLTV Nacogdoches County biomass plant now online.

BiofuelsDigest finds that biomass is losing out to cheaper natural gas in the US state of Alabama.

RECHARGE tells us how a German dairy town is milking renewable energy. Wildpoldsried, a dairy farming town west of Munich, harnessed its wind, Sun and biomass resources last year to produce three times more energy than the population of 2,600 consumed — generating extra revenues of €6m. A biomass boiler system that uses cow manure and wood pellets heats 42 local buildings. The surplus electricity produced by the town has been sold to the national grid, giving the town sufficient funds to pay for a new school, gymnasium and community hall, along with six other buildings.

Waste Management World says small scale food waste to biogas AD systems are ready to deploy in the UK. A Bristol, England small scale anaerobic digestion (AD) system for localised food waste treatment is the UK’s first commercial operation and the company that created it, Burdens Environmental, now plans to roll out the system across the country. Each Burdens system will be capable of handling between 3000 and 5000 tonnes of food waste per year. The system is able to recycle general food waste, including meat. The biogas produced in the digester is stored ready for use within the site generator, which can supply electricity and heat to be used as required.

CleanBiz Asia reports that molasses will soon be making bioethanol in Indonesia. Indonesian sugar plantation company PT Perkebunan Nusantara X says it will build a bioethanol production plant in Mojokerto, East Java, with a total capacity of 30 million litres of bioethanol annually. The fuel will be made from molasses derived from sugarcane.  The plant is expected to commence operation in March 2013. The Indonesian government is pushing the use of new and renewable energy sources with the goal of  them accounting for 17% of total energy use by 2025.

A joint ethanol/electricity plant is now operating in Peru we learn from renewable energy focus. Maple Energy, an integrated energy company, announced that its ethanol plant is now complete and producing both ethanol and electricity in the Piura Region on the north coast of the South American country. The ethanol is derived from sugarcane. The company expects to export its first shipment of ethanol next month.

Waste Management World writes about how garbage-fueled power plants are gaining momentum in China.





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