Cold weather, high fossil fuel costs drive pellet sales

By Staff | April 03, 2014

The wallets of many U.S. homeowners have taken a hit this winter due to high propane and heating oil costs and unusually low temperatures. Those with cord wood or pellet heat, however, have a leg up on the frigid season.

Data from the New Hampshire Office of Energy and Planning indicates wood pellets were $25.5 cheaper per MMBtu than propane and $13.71 cheaper per MMBtu than heating oil in early February.

Colder weather, however, also means increased demand for pellets. By February, several Northeastern producers reported they’d already sold out for the winter. Mark Wilson, president of New England Wood Pellet, said that’s the case for his company, which operates three manufacturing plants in Jaffrey, N.H., and Schuyler and Deposit, N.Y., with a combined plant capacity of over 250,000 tons per year.