Check out Greenpeace Belgium’s nifty tool which demonstrates the potential dangers and questionable sustainability of wood pellets that are being used to fuel power plants in Belgium by companies like Electrabel, RWE and E.ON.
The tool traces all the different steps, from wood pellet production in North America to burning in Belgian furnaces. The journey begins in forests which are harvested in the US and Canada, then taken to facilities which convert the cut logs to wood pellets, which are then packed and make a trans-Atlantic journey towards Europe, and then land in Belgium to burn for energy. A questionable industry considering that to support a single biomass plant of 250 MW, it takes about 800 000 tonnes of pellets per year and 30 naval voyages.
Photo: Journey of wood pellets from US to Belgium (c) Greenpeace Belgium