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The perfect storm for coal replacement fuel

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Bjørn Halvard Knappskog, CEO of alternative fuel producer Arbaflame, highlights the benefits of increased biomass use in a volatile market.

Over the past year, Europe has faced the highest energy prices in recent memory, almost quadrupling across most markets. Governments have stepped in to reduce the impact on consumers. In Norway, for example, the government is directly compensating consumers for increased power prices.

A variety of factors have contributed to this price shock, including reduced wind speeds, the removal of nuclear capacity and increased gas prices. For the first time, EU consumers have experienced the cost of having baseload, marginal production capacity dependent largely on hydrocarbon prices, gas and coal. With the war in Ukraine and declining relations with Russia, we are likely to see gas prices, coal prices and power prices in Europe remain high for the foreseeable future. At the same time, the EU carbon tax (EU Emissions Trading System – ETD) has seen permit prices hit an all-time high of almost €100. For the first time, burning biomass is cheaper than burning coal without subsidies on a...

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