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Finland - Biocoal Market Background Study

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Bio-coal market study: Macro and micro environmental
factors in the bio-coal sector in Finland
Lei Wang
Main thesis: Background study and macro &
micro factors
пЃ® Background of the study
пЃ® Definitions
пЃ® Current state of the bio-coal business in Finland
пЃ® Micro and macro environmental drivers for bio-coal in
пЃ® SWOT summary and conclusion
Background of the study
пЃ® Sustainable energy solutions should embody economic, social and environmental issues, and
meet the present energy needs without compromising the ability of future generations to meet
their own energy needs.
пЃ® Share of wood-based bio-energy to Finnish total energy consumption: 20% (85TWh) =>
30% (99TWh) by 2020
пЃ® Little attention has been paid to the Finnish wood-based bio-coal product and market.
Purpose of the study
пЃ® The general purpose is to identify the current situation of the
Finnish bio-coal sector, and outline a comprehensive picture of
the macro and micro business environments related to bio-coal
in Finland, as well as use a SWOT analysis to suggest guidelines
and hypotheses regarding what the Finnish bio-coal business
market should improve for future.
Key definitions
пЃ® charcoal,
bio-char, char, torrefied wood, torrefied pellets, green coal,
black chips, black pellets
пЃ® puuhiili,
grillihiili, TOPpelletti, torefiointi / paahdettu biomassa,
biohiilipelletti, and Biocarbon.
пЃ® bio-coal
has been defined as an umbrella concept which covers all
solid thermally degraded biomass products produced in the
process of pyrolysis, including torrefaction and hydrothermal
carbonization with different features and applications.
The tri-dimensional approach
Current state of bio-coal business in Finland
Current state of bio-coal business in Finland
пЃ® On
a non-industrial scale, bio-coal is a seasonal commodity used for
grilling and barbequing
пЃ® bio-char
and distillates as a growth enhancer for plants, activated
carbon to remove pollutants (purification), soil improver and a byproduct application in odour prevention
пЃ® neither
an industrial demand to market bio-coal in Finland, nor a
clear price tag on bio-coal
пЃ® The
first bio-coal production plant in Finland is to be built in Ristiina
in 2015 on a total budget of EUR 30-40M, and a planned production
capacity of 200,000 t/a
Macro and micro environmental factors
пЃ® Policies related to bio-coal
пЃ® Finland's National
renewable energy action plan plays a key role in
the bio-coal sector and sets the baseline for its development
пЃ® energy
пЃ® tax
пЃ® production
пЃ® funding
and investment subsidies
for R&D
пЃ® and
incentives for production and end-uses
пЃ® but,
tax rebates, investment incentives and production incentives are
unclear in this sector, and lack specific support for bio-coal endusers.
Macro and micro environmental factors
пЃ® Economic and social environment to bio-coal
пЃ® the
traditional energy sector is highly dependent on imported energy
пЃ® the
traditional energy sector is highly concentrated
пЃ® the
Finnish energy industry owns a variety of energy sources
пЃ® non-viable
bio-coal economic
пЃ® Enhances
regional policy, employment and energy security
significantly, because its activities evolve around local resources and
value addition, leading to diversified local economic development.
пЃ® The
bio-coal sector apparently falls into the needs of
constructing the bio-economy (50.75 bn€, 13.5%)
Macro and micro environmental factors
пЃ® Environmental factors for bio-coal
пЃ® the
renewable energy sector could produce of emission
reductions equivalent to 4-5 Mtons of CO2 in 2010, and
contribute 25-30% of its national reduction target in total by
пЃ® Bio-coal
and other by-products produced in Finland are
considered CO2 neutral
пЃ® Bio-coal
contains superior environmental credentials
compared to wood chips and pellets, such as calorific
value, energy density, moisture content and degradability
Macro and micro environmental factors
пЃ® Technical factors for bio-coal
пЃ® harvesting
of biomass, chipping, transportation, refining, and
пЃ® The
use of bio-coal will substantially increase the potential
ratio of co-firing in standard coal-fired power plants (up to
100% in comparison to about 10% based on wood pellets)
Macro and micro environmental factors
пЃ® Potential demand for bio-coal
пЃ® coal-fired
power plants (The potential market size of
replacing coal with biomass fuels in Finland will be
about 7-8 TWh/annually)
district heating (CHPs) (more than half the fuel
consumed in district heating can be replaced by biocoal, about 30,000GWh/annually)
пЃ® small-scale
use. (250,000 small-scale central housing
heating systems ; 300,000 oil-heated single-family
пЃ® Secured biomass
пЃ® Environmental friendliness
пЃ® Supportive policies.
пЃ® The
entrance requirement for the bio-coal business is relatively low,
“early birds” with foresight will win out
пЃ® Sufficient funds or investment for the launching periods of bio-coal
пЃ® As
an entirely new business
пЃ® bio-coal does not have a clear development model
- little market information available
- non-viable economic structure
- distribution channels which are not yet available.
пЃ® We
would like to advise Finnish companies to work out the cost structure, profit
feasibility of the bio-coal business and construct a practicable and sustainable
biomass supply system
пЃ® Opportunities
of the Finnish bio-coal sector come along with the national
sustainability development policies and construction of a bio-economy.
пЃ® We
would suggest that they focus on decentralised local economic sales, biomass
supply and energy end use
пЃ® Competition
with fossil coal and other wood-based bio-fuels.
пЃ® Improving
its competitiveness requires cooperation and
integration along the whole supply chain.
пЃ® co-firing
bio-coal with fossil coal and other bio-fuels can be
a perfect point at which to introduce bio-coal to the market
with the current energy consumption technology and
market structure
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