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Enviva announces first wood pellet shipment to Japan

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Enviva's first shipment of sustainable wood pellets is on its way from Port Panama City, Florida, to Japan’s Iwakuni Port.

The first shipment carried approximately 28,000 tonnes of wood pellets made from low-value wood sourced in the US Southeast.

By using sustainable pellets instead of coal, Japan’s heat and power producers can reduce carbon emissions by more than 85% on a lifecycle basis, providing a significant reduction in emissions for the world’s fifth-largest greenhouse gas emitter, while providing grid stability.

“Worldwide demand for renewable solutions that can help mitigate climate change right now continues to grow immensely,” said Enviva’s chairman and CEO, John Keppler.

“We are very proud of our operations in the US Southeast and our export terminals that enable us to safely, stably, and reliably deliver a product that displaces coal and helps countries like Japan meet their climate change goals in the most cost-efficient way while ensuring reliable and dispatchable energy generation.

“We are honoured by the trust and responsibility our Japanese customers have placed in us to be the core supplier of renewable fuels to such an important project mitigating climate change and are privileged to be a part of their success.”

Japan’s feed-in-tariffs for renewable energy, along with the government’s commitment to shut down or decarbonise 100 coal plants, have enabled more than 3 million tons of long-term demand for wood pellets to be contracted by Enviva. Most of such agreements with the firm’s Japanese customers extend to 2040 and beyond.

Florida Congressman Neal Dunn, M.D., said: “The Port of Panama City and Enviva’s first shipment of sustainable biomass to Japan is a major milestone for Florida’s Second Congressional District.

“This partnership between Enviva and the Port of Panama City will not only boost the local and state economy; it will provide alternatives to conventional power sources internationally.”