Bio-coal’s Potential for BC’s Economy and Environment

Pacific Carbon Trust 15 June 2012.

(Editorial note: And now for something completely different, not “clean coal”, but “bio coal”, bio coal is produced by heating biomass, like making charcoal.).

Pacific Carbon Trust is launching a Request for Proposals specifically to purchase carbon offsets resulting from switching from fossil-fuel coal to renewable bio-coal. The resulting financial commitment to purchase offsets will assist British Columbia bio-coal producers to secure the financing they need to move to commercialization.

Bio-coal is created through the torrefaction (French for “roasting”) of biomass that results in a dry, enhanced product with an energy density on par with the energy density of coal. It is a high-grade solid fuel suitable for multi-purpose commercial and industrial use that is easy to transport and store. It has similar characteristics to ordinary coal with the vital difference that it is a clean, renewable resource.

During torrefaction of biomass, the biomass typically loses 20% of its mass but only 10% of its energy content. After being torrefied, biomass can be densified – typically into pellets or briquettes – to further improve its energy properties…