We've already noted that wood pellets are a hot item when it comes to climate-friendly heating, and we've even given a run down of our favourite stoves. Unfortunately it's not all good news - we've also had to report that the housing slow down has meant a shortage of sawdust for pellet manufacture. This is where the activities of UK-based Biojoule may come in handy — they have apparently developed a mobile pellet processing plant that can be moved from location-to-location, allowing forestry and agricultural waste, or dedicated biomass crops like willow, to be processed at source into easy to move pellets. Not only does this mean reduced transportation costs, it also means that wood or crops that might otherwise have gone unused can be economically transformed into a reliable, valuable fuel:
"Pellet plants are usually large fixed installations, sited in places where there is a large concentration of wood — such as large sawmills. A 25,000 tonne per year plant with a 20 year design life would need 500,000 dry tonnes of wood to make construction worthwhile.
By operating a cost effective small plant Biojoule can make use of smaller reservoirs of feedstock. This alone increases the amount of wood that can be used. In many cases the wood resource will be too small to even justify one full time Biojoule plant. This might happen during forestry management operations or site clearing. In this case Biojoule will bring a plant to the operational site, process the wood that is available, and then take the plant away. Around 4,000-5,000 dry tonnes is all that is needed to make a plant move worthwhile."
Biojoule is the brainchild of Mike Mason, founder of successful carbon offset pioneers Climate Care who were recently acquired by JP Morgan (see also parts one and two of our recent interview with Mike Mason). Rumor has it that Mike is also actively interested in the development of Biochar — the much talked about climate solution that may help sequester carbon, produce energy AND improve soils for increased crop yields all at the same time. Watch this space — Mike has a proven track record in climate solutions so we're excited to see he has his finger in so many important pies.
More On Pellet Stoves
Wood Vs. Pellet Stoves
Pellet Stoves Are Back (and Easier Than Ever)
TreeHugger Picks: Pellet Stoves
Finally, a Modern, North American Pellet Stove
Where to Get Wood Pellets
Wood Stoves Are Hot
More on Biochar
Biochar Offers Answers for Healthy Soils and Carbon Sequestration
Charcoal: The Next Green Alternative
Soil Color=Carbon Content: Sequestering Useful Carbon
Amazon Carbon Trick Comes to Light
::Biojoule::via site visit::