EIA: Densified biomass fuel sales reach 690,000 tons in April

By Erin Voegele | August 12, 2021

The U.S. Energy Information Administration recently released data showing U.S. manufacturers produced approximately 770,000 tons of densified biomass fuel in April, with sales reaching 690,000 tons.

The data was released as part of the July edition of EIA’s Monthly Densified Biomass Fuels Report, which contains data for April. The EIA collected data from 80 operating manufacturers of densified biomass fuel to complete the report. The report does not include data on facilities with annual production capacities of less than 10,000 tons. Those smaller facilities report data annually rather than monthly.

The 80 manufacturers surveyed for April had a total combined production capacity of 12.95 million tons per year and collectively had the equivalent of 2,358 full-time employees.

Respondents purchased 810,000 tons of raw biomass feedstock in April, produced 770,000 tons of densified biomass fuel and sold 690,000 tons of densified biomass fuel. Production included 137,484 tons of heating pellets and 633,111 tons of utility pellets.

Domestic sales of densified biomass fuel in April reached 111,253 tons at an average price of $184.19 per ton. Exports in April reached 587,962 tons at an average price of $177.52 per ton.

Inventories of premium/standard pellets increased to 236,534 tons in April, up from 170,619 tons in March. Inventories of utility pellets fell to 317,691 tons in April, down from 352,457 tons in March.

Data gathered by the EIA shows that total U.S. densified biomass fuel capacity reached 13.1 million tons in April, with 13 million tons of that capacity listed as currently operating or temporarily not in operation. Capacity included 2.07 million tons in the East, 10.26 million tons in the South, and 766,000 tons in the West.