The global wood pellet market for power plants and heating is expected to grow annually by 14.1% and reach a value of €20,073 million by 2023, according to Transparency Market Research.
Wood pellets production has increased substantially in the past few years, owing to the implementation of stringent emission norms in Europe and North America.
High energy density and easy availability are some of the advantages that facilitate international trade of wood pellets.
Growing concerns regarding greenhouse gas emissions (GHGs) have promoted the use of wood pellets as substitutes to fossil fuels for heat and power generation.
The US and Canada were the major exporters of wood pellets in 2014, while Russia and certain countries in Asia Pacific and South America are expected to become leading exporters of wood pellets in the near future.
Wood pellets are low cost as compared to other conventional fuels including natural gas.
Power plants were expected to consume around 800,000 tonnes of wood pellets per annum in 2014.
Wood pellets for district and industrial heating are generally traded globally, with exports from the US, Canada, Australia, and South Africa, while wood pellets for residential heating are traded regionally.
Quality requirements for industrial wood pellets are different from those utilised for residential applications, and are largely determined by logistics facilities and combustion technology.