U.S. Biomass Power, Dampened by Market Forces, Fights to Stay Ablaze

1. Going dark The 10 states that produced the most net biomass generation in 2017 were: California (5,911 GWh); Florida (4,941 GWh); Georgia (4,917 GWh); Virginia (4,035 GWh); Alabama (3,377 GWh); Maine (2,930 GWh); Louisiana (2,796 GWh); South Carolina (2,687 GWh); North Carolina (2,633 GWh); and Michigan (2,578 GWh). Over the past five years, Virginia’s net biomass generation surged 39%; Georgia’s, 29%; South Carolina’s, 21%; Alabama’s, 17%; and Florida’s, 11%. But California’s net biomass generation shrank 11%; Maine’s, 24%; and Michigan’s, 5%. Fourteen other states saw decreases, including Idaho (29%); Illinois (19%); and Texas (10%). Source: EIA/POWER

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Though experts say biomass should continue to play a key role in the U.S. renewable power portfolio for its baseload properties, contributions to forest management, and other reasons, a swathe of uneconomic biomass power plants across the U.S.—especially in the West—have been recently idled or shut down.

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Source: Power