Production and Consumption of Wood Pellets
In the last years, pellet production facilities have boomed all over the world, especially in Europe and in Northern America. The production capacity in all EU 27 is estimated at about 9 million tons (2007), while globally it might be as much as a 12-14 million tons capacity.
EU pellet production leading countries are Sweden (1,700,000 tons), Germany (900,000 tons) and Austria (800,000 tons). Sweden and Austria both have been leading pellet countries since the beginning of the pellet market development in Europe in the middle 90s. Increasing production capacities can also be found, for example, in France, Spain, Latvia, Estonia and Poland. Russia has significantly increased its production capacities, from 50,000 tons in 2005 to 550,000 tons in 2007, nearly all of whom are for export. While in northern America, Canada’s plants produced pellets about 1,335,000 tons in 2008.
In terms of pellet consumption, Sweden, Germany and Austria are in the lead in Europe, closely followed by France which develops rapid in recent years. Italy has become one of the most important pellet consumers due to the increasing number of installed pellet stoves (about 800,000 stoves). The total pellet consumption in Europe presently amounts to about 6 million tons per year.
Important pellet exporters are Canada and Russia; large pellet importers are Denmark, Italy, Belgium and the Netherlands.
With an increase of global trade, a world-wide certification for the sustainable production of pellets will become increasingly important.
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