Matching regional biomass supplies to end user demand

10 May 2022
With the increased interest in bioenergy and biofuels for replacing fossil fuels a focus of sector activities is now on showing potential users where the biomass fuel they need could come from. There is no doubt that there can be adequate biomass to meet demand. However, we have to undertake some work to ensure that the right type of biomass, with the right quantities, is in the right place, at the right time and at the right price.

The Bioenergy Association (BANZ) has developed a scenario of future bioenergy and biofuels demand (150PJ by 2050) which indicates where demand for biomass could come from. 150PJ is a trebling of current bioenergy use. The scenario also sets out where the biomass and organic waste supply to meet that demand could come from. The analysis is based on the recent updating of the work undertaken by Scion on Residual biomass fuel projections for New Zealand. The analysis also shows the areas where we need to focus attention.

A copy of the full 90 page report can also be downloaded here

Discussions with Government over future biomass supply work programmes is already resulting in new research and market development initiatives being developed. These will complement the demand side initiatives (such as GIDI) which EECA have been successfully running for some time.

The biggest barrier to efficient solid biofuel supply is the lack of information and knowledge of the regional solid biofuel supply market by both suppliers and buyers. To address that gap in information, potential buyers in a region need to aggregate their respective demands so that the suppliers can gear up their capabilities to respond. Buyers also need to know what biomass fuel is available in their region, and potential biomass fuel suppliers need to know what aggregated demand for 30 years ahead looks like. Any gap between projected demand and supply can be met by landowners providing more biomass.

Government has confirmed its policies for the replacement of fossil fuels use in schools and government institutions by low emissions fuels (electricity and biomass). This firmed demand for biomass is giving biomass suppliers greater confidence to build fuel supply capacity. The comparative advantage for biomass supply is that it is easier to plant more trees than it is to get consented and build more electricity power stations.

Wood residue availability, technologies and systems being used to harvest, handle, transport and dry wood residues from forest and wood harvesting sites and a raft of options for co-ordinating biomass supplies to meet end user demand are being detailed as part of the eagerly awaited Residues2Revenues 2022 event being run in Rotorua, New Zealand on 26-27 July 2022.

Details on the full conference, workshop and exhibition programme can be found on the event website. Registrations tell us that this is going to be another full event so if keen on ensuring you save a space, registrations can be made here. Note: Virtual on-line registrations for delegates outside New Zealand can also be made.