Efficient supply chains will unlock immense biomass potential

Thursday, July 05, 2018

World Bioenergy Association is pleased to publish our latest factsheet on Biomass Supply Chains. This factsheet deals with the logistics of biomass energy systems including harvesting and collection, pretreatment and upgrading, storage, transportation and handling. This factsheet is the 12thin a series of important reports highlighting fact-based information on the latest technologies and processes in the bioenergy sector. This factsheet will form a basis for these stakeholders to understand the various technologies and processes already existing worldwide and to implement the lessons learned from successful case studies.

Bioenergy plays a key role in mitigating climate change in all sectors of energy supply and the supply chains of biomass are crucial in order to realize the full potential of bioenergy. The efficient operation of all components of supply chains is important to ensure a stable supply and reduce overall costs of the technology. This factsheet focusses on supply chains of feedstock to energy sectors including forestry and agriculture.

“The need to combat climate change and fulfil Paris Agreement requires input and use of all renewable energy sources. Almost all countries around the world who have signed the agreement are already using biomass as an energy source. Biomass in the form of wood chips and pellets etc. has become an internationally traded commodity. However, for maximizing the sustainable utilization of biomass, it is important to understand the process of logistics/supply chains. Our factsheet will help to understand and improve the knowledge base in this field “– says Remigijus Lapinskas, President, World Bioenergy Association.

Feedstock costs associated with supply chains form the major share of the total cost of the technology. The overall cost is highly case dependent, and the successful management of the supply chains is critical for the success of any investment. Thus, improving the supply chains will unlock the immense potential of the biomass sector.

Numerous technologies already exist to meet the needs of all components of the supply chains. Countries especially in Europe are pioneers in efficient use of machinery for harvesting and collection of biomass, efficient pretreatment of biomass and processing to energy dense products (e.g. pellets) and also efficient use of road, rail and marine transportation of biomass from short and long distances.

To mobilize biomass on a global level, WBA urges for a concerted effort from all stakeholders in the biomass supply chain. WBA believes that supply chains from forestry and agriculture sectors in the future will enable cities, provinces and countries to meet their energy goals through the use bioenergy and leading to energy security, efficient resource utilization and economic development.