New biomass alliance focuses on wood, miscanthus pellets

By Lisa Gibson | October 24, 2011

The newly-formed Green Energy Farms Alliance will focus on the creation of a diverse solid biofuel portfolio, through the production of woody and miscanthus pellets for European markets.

Miscanthus developer New Energy Farms and renewable energy project developer Global Green Engineered Fuels LLC have teamed up to form the alliance. It is currently involved in the development of a wood fuel manufacturing and distribution plant outside Atlanta, as well as a dual miscanthus and wood biomass manufacturing and distribution plant in southwest Georgia.

Green Energy Farms Alliance aims to develop a portfolio of solid biomass fuels, driven by high energy values, competitive and stable fuel pricing, optimum sustainability of raw material sources, and exceptional combustion performance characteristics, according to New Farms. Through the alliance, a dynamic supply chain will be established linking the agriculture and timber resources of the U.S. Southeast with the solid biofuel consumers of Europe.

Phase one of the alliance’s work will revolve around industrial-grade biomass pellets from both wood and miscanthus, focusing on a target market in the European Union’s power industry. The phase will include the production of 1 million tons of pellets, according to New Farms.

New Farms’ miscanthus plots are on nonperforming crop and timber lands running through the most economically deprived regions of Georgia, the company said. It will not have an effect on the Georgia food crop industries, which rely on premium, nutrient-rich soils, it added.

The overriding goal of the Green Energy Farms Alliance in its fuel design is to maximize the yield efficiencies of the land resources used, and to optimize the value chain created by its engineered products.