Nordic Utilities: CHP units to keep running despite biomass shortage
Orsted, the Danish utility firm, said it had enough resources to keep plants operational over the December to March period.
However, the company expected the “supply situation to be tight for the coming months”, said spokesman Carsten Kjaer.
In order to stockpile fuel ahead of winter, the company swapped biomass with oil at some of its plants between July and September.
This was a result of Russia's invasion of Ukraine, which led to trade restrictions between EU Member States and key biomass supplier Russia - which contributed to supply difficulties and consequent surging prices.
Rolf Hunt, head of CHP at Swedish utility Vaxjo Energi, said the firm should also be sufficiently supplied with biomass this winter – albeit at a higher cost.
Swedish CHP plants were, however, less exposed to this year’s price rises since they used less wood pellets in their biomass than continental rivals, he added.
Russia and Belarus were typically responsible for around a third of EU pellet imports but these had been curtailed due to the war, said Henrik Brodin, head of Swedish forestry cooperative Sodra Skogsagarna.
Concerns around an energy shortage had only worsened the supply-demand balance by incentivising hoarding and speculative buying, he added.
Baltic biomass supply to Nordic countries had also been hit by a shortfall in wood deliveries from Russia, said one biomass trader.n