Bioenergy leads to a better forest industry and to better forestry

Aristotle provided us with the idea that the “whole is more than the sum of its parts.” Bioenergy developing as part of the forest products industry in the South seems to have supported this 2300 year-old adage. Bioenergy facilities that currently operate in the South utilize 18 million tons of forest biomass and others in development could likely utilize an additional 21 million tons by 2023. There are at least 18 industrial-sized wood pellet mills operating or being constructed across the South – from Texas to Virginia. These facilities would utilize over 12 million tons of biomass if operated at full capacity. There are six pellet mills and three biomass-toelectricity mills in the active planning and pre-construction phase in Georgia alone, with numerous others likely across the region. This developing biomass “part” of the industry is becoming integral to the “whole” of forestry and symbiotic, if not dependent, relationships are developing that affect mills, loggers, landowners, and the forests themselves.


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