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October 27, 2017 10:33 pm

Making the Nay-Sayers Understand the Forestry Sector

Monday, June 6, 2016 @ 5:53 AM

Prince George, B.C.-  It is touted as a renewable energy source,  but there are still  challenges facing  Bio-Energy.

In the Northern Interior of BC,  the  major challenge  is access to fibre.   In the wake of the Mountain Pine Beetle,  all who  depend on forestry are  pressed to  have access to  the resource.  As was witnessed just a week ago,   one company  (Pinnacle Pellet)  has curtailed operations for  9 to 10 months as the fibre  source issues are  detailed and the  facility  retooled to  handle what may be a change in  type of supply.

Bill Strauss  is the President and founder of FutureMetrics LLC in  Maine in the U.S.   and  a recognized  expert in the wood pellet sector.   His company  largely ships  pellets to power plants which are integrating  wood pellets  into their fuel sources as a substitute for coal. “One of the major challenges is to get the message out that this (  substituting pellets for coal)  is a sustainable solution for moving us  from a heavily carbonized power sector to a decarbonized power sector.”

Strauss has issue with those who say  burning wood pellets is not “carbon neutral”.  He says  such positions are usually taken by  those  whose  understanding of  “trees” is in their local park  “They really don’t have any  concept of the scope and scale of the forest products industry.”  The bottom line says Strauss  is  that “The harvest rate cannot exceed the growth rate”  and it is a challenge to get people who  aren’t well versed in  the forest products industry to understand that.

“A tree is merchandised so that the value  is gained from every piece at the highest value possible ” says Strauss ” Nobody  would sell a saw log to a pellet mill because a pellet mill  can’t afford the saw log price.”   He says  it makes sense for  power plants which use coal, to make the switch to pellets,  gradually at first,  with the aim of being  fired 100% by pellets.

Is there enough  wood   available to  proceed with that kind of  change over?  Strauss says  yes.  ” I don’t know how many pellets B.C. and Alberta could produce, but it’s quite  a bit more than they are producing now.”  He says there are many  unexploited or unused wood resources “Particularly  as you move further north,  now maybe the logistics  don’t make sense,  but there’s plenty more ( fibre).”

He says the decline in the pulp and paper industry, particularly in the south east US,  is making more  fibre  available for possible  pellet  production.   That, combined with a shorter  growing  time, and  trees planted in  plantation style farms in the south east U.S., makes  the scenario  much different  than that  in  BC  and Alberta.

According  to Strauss one large power plant could consumer  a  few  million tons a year of wood pellets if that plant was  fully dependent on  wood pellets.  He says at the moment, B.C. makes aout 2.2 million tons of wood pellets annually, but doesn’t know if BC would be capable  of producing  twice that much “The industry has to be constrained by the sustainability constraint.   You cannot cross that boundary at all.”

He says the  carbon neutrality can only be achieved if the carbon being released by combustion is being captured by the new  growth.

Straus  will be one of the  featured panelists at the Bioenergy conference taking place in Prince George June 15-17th.






Oh my I don’t even know where to begin. Here is a company in the wood pellet industry bringing in the subject of “evil” carbon, C02 as a scare tactic to support the pellet industry. Biased article or what.

This carbon, C02, there is confusion between the two, false mantra is all about political power and money, lots of money. Interesting on how so many criticize Christy Clark but remain mute on the carbon tax. So you folks don’t believe a thing she says except on the carbon tax.

The earth has been warmer, and has C02 levels much higher than now with no harm done. In fact plants love C02, the more the better.

Anyhow how if those of you reading this are not to indoctrinated by the C02 BS here is some reading. For those of you who will give it the thimbs down, refute it, just try, those up the hill can’t their incomes depend on the false C02 scare.

ht tps://wattsupwiththat.com/2016/06/05/impacts-of-climate-change-policy-in-the-real-world/

ht tp://www.friendsofscience.org/

    Seamutt: “In fact plants love C02, the more the better.”

    So here is a company which utilizes wood pellets as an energy source(a renewable resource) and that process produces CO2 – plants love it – which future trees will use In their growth!

    What is “evil” about that? Is there any way that anything that is not coal, gas and oil based which will ever get an iota of approval from you?

      Read the article again they talk about so called carbon neutral what ever that means. I am no issue with coal, gas I guess my post was not clear enough.

    I wish you would quit posting as if you know anything about this subject. Your constant repetition that “plants love CO2. The more the better” makes me think you must have been a pirate’s companion in another life.

    Your repetitive argument has a big logical hole that you are either ignorant to or willfully oblivious to.

      Back to ya. Now refit Dr. Bell.


      You think that I am going to take a “scientist” who starts out by writing that he worked for the Canadian Cattlemen’s Assoc. and other forestry and agricultural industries (as he put it) seriously? Really?

      The guy just sounds and writes like an industry shill. Furthermore, you mustn’t have read your own linked article. His name was Ball, not Bell. Also, I think you meant to say refute, not refit. Why would I bother to refute the man when anything I would post would only draw a response (from you) that I have been brainwashed by AGW “scam artists”. It would just be a waste of effort on my part.

I will believe this climate change/global warming crap when someone can explain those rings on the mountains from melting glaciers. What caused them to melt over the last million years, dinosaur breath?

    Climate change/global warming is not crap. It is actually happening. The only thing that some people like to argue about is whether or not the burning of fossil fuels for the last century is contributing to it in any way, be it slight or massive.

    Climate changes in the past could have been due to a number of natural causes, such as volcanic eruptions, asteroid impacts, changes in the oceans, wide spread forest fires….we were not around at that time so we do not know for sure.

    I am listening to what scientists are saying.

      I am listening to the scientists as well, there are just as many scientists that do not believe that man has any impact on the climate at all, just depends on who you believe. I know I don’t believe a word Suzuki says.

      there are just as many scientists that do not believe that man has any impact on the climate at all


      I don’t believe this statement is even remotely true.

    Nmg your statement proves how well the missinformation and lies have gotten out. Read my links.

    Dr. Bell in my link is a scientist, read the links and others and think about it.

      The Friends of Science? Aren’t they the group with close ties to the oil and gas industry? How about this for an alternate viewpoint:

      I think I’ll go with NASA . . .

      ht tp://climate.nasa.gov/scientific-consensus/

My understanding is that pellets are added to coal burning facilities, to reduce the amount of coal being burnt, however I doubt that pellets will ever actually replace these coal plants, especially not in China.

Most pellets produced in BC are exported, so if we were to supply pellets to the North America market would there be sufficient supply??

Another aspect of this scenario is that at the same time we are hyping burning pellets to generate electricity, we are pushing to export huge amounts of natural gas to generate electricity. Is it not possible that the export of natural gas (if it takes place) would kill off the pellet industry in this Country. ??

    They won’t be exporting any pellets to Alberta after the Dippers close all the coal plants.

“doesn’t know if BC would be capable of producing twice that much “The industry has to be constrained by the sustainability constraint. You cannot cross that boundary at all.”

And yet, every spring and fall companies burn massive piles of wood – slash, too small trees, partly decayed – filling the air with smoke, and massive volumes of Carbon Dioxide. Can’t be that difficult to figure out how to change present practices. Make that slash available close to a roadside, so pellet companies can utilize it. Doesn’t affect the sustainability at all, gives better utilization of the resource, adds more money for the same harvest, reduces the CO2 being produced.

Your welcome!

    Why are you worried about c02, the world was getting dangerously short of it before the recent rise.

    There is no reproducable science proving how much or at all c02 affects climate let alone man’s miniscule contribution.

    The earth in the past had 10 times Moe c02 than now and life loved it.

      Seamutt, you should read your very first past again!

      You said:”Here is a company in the wood pellet industry bringing in the subject of “evil” carbon, C02 as a scare tactic to support the pellet industry.

      This is patently false! The industry is aiming at carbon neutrality! That is not “evil”! It is in fact good.

      Seamutt:”Why are you worried about c02, the world was getting dangerously short of it before the recent rise. ”

      I can not abide by any extremism. Endless repetitive mantras accomplish nothing when they are obviously motivated by something coming from a profit oriented conspiracy theory fringe. It is impossible to have a reasonable discourse when confronted with that kind of thing.

      Over and out.

I have to wonder if there is a big difference between burning wood pellets or burning natural gas. We seem to have an overabundance of natural gas. I wonder how that compares to wood fibre needed to produce wood pellets?

Hog fuel from the sawmills to pellet plants in the most economical way to make wood pellets. Once you go to whole log chipping, or hauling fibre from out of the bush, your costs go up, and it becomes more difficult to process this wood, and make a profit.

With less mills in North Central BC my guess is that fibre for pellet plants is becoming scarce. Cheap Natural Gas on the world market certainly does not help the situation.

Why do you need carbon neutrality? Profit, fringe I see you have swallowed the dogma hook line and sinker.

Profit you want profit the whole AGW issue is worth 1.5 trillion a year.

Conspiracy fringe well I haven’t seen you refute my posts except for empty tantrums.

    Seriously. You should just stop. Nobody is going to bother to refute your posts, because they are smart enough to know that you will never accept the refutation. God, himself, could show up and write irrefutable proof on stone tablets in letters of fire and you would probably tell him that the “AGW scam artists” must have brainwashed him, but if He just read Cattleman Assoc. scientist Tim Ball’s tract then He would see the light.

Thumbs down heh, what’s your argument, oh wait the thumbs down must be from the enviromental group up at the uni making money off the scam and embarrassed to call themselves climate scientist’s.

You’re right on Chuck.

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