December 18, 2015

In this Week's Pellet Wire:

Congress Passes Tax Extender Package

The omnibus spending and tax measure that was released early Wednesday morning includes several items of interest to pellet producers. After a thorough review of the 2,000 plus page bill, we have outlined some of the more notable provisions below. 

Renewable Energy Tax Incentives

Despite a flurry of 11th hour communications with key staff, we were unable to shoe horn biomass thermal into the investment tax credit for solar energy that was included in the legislation. In Section 25D, the residential 30 percent investment tax credit, only solar energy was able to get an extension through 2019, after which its credit begins to phase out. Other technologies that currently qualify for Sec. 25D, namely geothermal and fuel cells, were left out and will have to work to extend the credit when it lapses for these industries at the end of next year. We will be working with these groups on a pathway for qualifying biomass thermal technologies in 2016.  

Sec. 25C Biomass Stove Credit: The $300 wood and pellet stove credit is extended in the bill through 2016, applied retroactively to the beginning of this year.    

Please visit PFI’s website to read more about the omnibus package provisions that could affect the biomass thermal industry, including small business and R&D tax credits.


Register for Breakfast & Biomass in New Orleans, LA

Registration is open for Breakfast & Biomass, PFI’s annual event at the Hearth, Patio and Barbecue Expo in New Orleans, LA. PFI welcomes all pellet fuels manufacturers, retailers and appliance manufacturers to join us for the breakfast where we will address the latest trends and issues of importance to all involved in the industry. Join us on Friday, March 18, 2016 at 7:30am in the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center. The event will include industry reports, networking opportunities and a full breakfast.

Most PFI sponsorship packages contain automatic registration for Breakfast & Biomass, among many other benefits. Sponsoring PFI is a great way to ensure that your company is closely involved with all of our events and publications, with maximum exposure at a minimum cost. 

Please visit PFI’s website for more information on PFI sponsorships, or for information on how to register for the $35 breakfast.


Don't Forget to Renew Your PFI Membership Before the New Year

At its most recent meeting, the PFI Board approved the 2016 membership dues rates, which can be found on the PFI website. You may renew your membership with PFI now by visiting our online renewal page or you may contact the PFI office and process your renewal via email ([email protected]) or phone (206-209-5277). Your 2015 membership expires on December 31, so be sure to renew soon so you can continue to take advantage of the benefits of PFI membership.

For those of you who aren't members of PFI, we encourage you to commit to joining the association in 2016. There are a number of opportunities for you to be involved in PFI’s initiatives in the year ahead and to benefit directly from PFI’s advocacy of policy makers and end users on your behalf.  When we are united as an industry, we will have more success seeing the regulatory and legislative outcomes that will benefit all of us. Read more about how membership in PFI benefits your business. 

Do you know a company that may be interested in PFI membership?  Please contact the PFI office at [email protected] or 206-209-5277.

USDA Wood Energy Grants Applications Due January 16th

The U.S. Forest Service (Forest Service) requests proposals to substantially expand and accelerate wood energy and wood products markets throughout the United States to support forest management needs on National Forest System and other forest lands. 

The priorities named in the Request for Proposal include:

  • Reduce hazardous fuels and improve forest health on National Forest System and other forestlands. 
  • Reduce costs of forest management on all land types.
  • Promote economic and environmental health of communities.

Please visit the U.S. Forest Service website to learn more about the grants and the application process. 

Argus Biomass 2016
April 5-7 
London, UK

Argus Biomass 2016 is the largest gathering of market players from across the biomass supply chain in both the industrial and premium pellet markets. This annual event will bring together many of the worlds most influential leading minds of the biomass industry to accelerate innovation, research, commercialization and market uptake in the use of biomass. 

Over thirty expert speakers are already confirmed to discuss the current challenges and opportunities for pellet producers, traders and utilities. You will hear about:

  • How can the industry collaborate more effectively to proactively tackle negative press and reinforce the benefits of biomass as renewable, reliable and affordable?
  • Which new markets will be the most significant demand centres? What can be expected from Japan and biomass for power generation in the US?
  • In the residential market how successfully can wood pellets compete with other fuels?
  • Projects coming online
  • Certification schemes and much more

In three days you’ll get up to date with the current state of the market and be inspired by the future vision, shared knowledge, contacts and skills needed to take your business forward. Attend the conference and meet both the supply and demand side across the industrial and premium pellet markets all in one place.

Get your copy of the preview brochure and see what’s being discussed, whom you’ll meet and what else is going on at this exciting global Biomass event. By registering before 29 January 2016 you’ll receive the maximum discount available. For more information or assistance with registration, please visit the website, email [email protected] or call +44 (0) 20 7780 4341.

Season's Greetings from PFI!

From our family to yours, the Pellet Fuels Institute wishes everyone in the pellet industry a happy holiday season! 

Please note that PFI will be closed December 24 and 25, as well as January 1, 2016.



Upcoming Industry Events 

  • January 28, 2016: Western Forestry and Conservation Association Conference
  • February 24-26, 2016: World Sustainable Energy Days 2016
  • March 18, 2016: Breakfast & Biomass
  • March 30-April 1, 2016: Northeast Biomass Heating Expo
  • April 5-7, 2016: Argus Biomass 2016
  • April 11-14, 2016: International Biomass Conference & Expo 2016
  • June 6-9, 2016: European Biomass Conference & Exhibition
  • June 15-17, 2016: International Bioenergy Conference
  • July 24-26, 2016: PFI Annual Conference

Connect with PFI

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Fuel Availability

Are you a PFI member pellet manufacturer or distributor that has fuel available? Email [email protected] to have your listing updated or added to the PFI website.

Industry News

EIA updates bioenergy forecast in recent reports
Biomass Magazine
The U.S. Energy Information Administration has released the December edition of its Short-Term Energy Outlook, predicting total renewables used in the electric power sector will decrease by 2 percent this year. Hydropower generation is expected to be down 8.6 percent, with nonhydropower renewables up 4.4 percent.

Wood biomass is expected to be used to generate 115,000 MWh per day of electricity per day this year, increasing to 116,000 MWh per day next year. Waste biomass is expected to be used to generate 58,000 MWh per day of electricity this year, increasing to 60,000 MWh per day next year.

Read the Full Article

Wood pellet company creates conservation fund
Asheville Citizen Times
As world leaders meet in Paris this week to hash out a plan to halt climate change, one emerging goal has been forest conservation, with the realization that forests - vast swaths of trees that suck up carbon dioxide - are essential in the fight against global warming.

In a nod to these dealings in Paris, along with an effort to show its industry is operating under sustainable forestry practices - despite claims from environmental groups in the Carolinas - Enviva Holdings, LP, the world’s largest producer of wood pellets, announced this week that it is establishing the Enviva Forest Conservation Fund.

Read the Full Article

FutureMetrics responds to report criticizing wood pellets
Biomass Magazine
A new white paper published by FutureMetrics offers a critique of Climate Central’s recent story “Pulp Fiction,” a three-part special report by John Upton that criticizes the use of wood pellets.

In the paper, William Strauss, president of FutureMetrics, notes that a few non-governmental organizations have used flawed analysis regarding the carbon benefits associated with the use of wood pellets for power generation. He says the claims fall into two basic categories. First, that forests are being decimated to produce wood pellets, and second, that the combustion of wood pellets creates pollution that is worse than coal.

Read the Full Article

State approves giving company with pellet mill plan $350k
A state board has passed a plan to give nearly $350,000 for a proposed wood pellet production plant in Vermont.

Kingdom Pellet has proposed building a plant at the site of the former Gilman paper mill, located on the Connecticut River.

Wood pellets are a heating fuel used instead of traditional firewood and are burned in efficient, cleaner-burning stoves.

The Caledonian Record reports the state Economic Progress Council granted preliminary approval to the company. The money is tied to job creation.

Read the Full Article


Pellet Fuels Institute |  [email protected]   | 703.522.6778