Sweetman has secured ongoing log supplies to ensure that it has sufficient supplies of biomass for renewable bioenergy projects.

Biomass sourced from wood waste is seen as a form of baseload renewable energy that provides a viable alternative to coal and is an industry that was already worth US$50bn in 2020.

Sweetman chairman John Halkett said that based on advice from the Forestry Corporation of New South Wales, Deputy Premier John Barilaro had formally approved the transfer of longer-term log supply agreements to the company.

Discussions are also planned to trial options for enhanced economic harvest and utilisation of forest-sourced wood waste.

Halkett noted that the heightened global urgency to reduce carbon emissions and accelerate renewable energy production had driven interest in bioenergy projects.

“At a company level, this urgency is manifest in a range of options that include the export of woodchips to Japan to support power station conversion from coal to biomass, and the use of sawmill wood waste and forest residues for the production of domestic renewable baseload energy, syngas and biochar,” he noted.

“All these initiatives are extremely encouraging with prospective commercial benefits.”

The International Energy Agency considers biomass sourced from sustainable forest and plantation operations to be a form of renewable energy so long as harvests do not exceed carbon uptake in the forest.


Formal agreements

Sweetman now has formal arrangements with domestic and international companies related to the production of bioenergy and high value biochar use woody waste sourced from sustainable forest and plantation management operations and from sawmill and timber processing activities.

“The use of this essentially residual woody material processed as biomass will provide an economic benefit for the forest industry in Australia, generate regional jobs and economic activity,” Halkett explained.

“However, most importantly it will contribute to climate change abatement and reduce fuel loadings in forests susceptible to bushfire threats.”

This comes less than two weeks after the company signed a 20-year supply agreement with a leading Japanese conglomerate for the supply of 60,000t of green woodchip (biomass) per annum to a power plant near Kitakyushu, Japan.

Sweetman, which is planning an ASX listing later this year, will export 60,000 tonnes of green woodchip (biomass) per annum to a power plant near Kitakyushu, Japan, generating about US$4.5m in recurring revenue each year.

Besides the Japanese biomass supply contract, the company is also in advanced negotiations with Verdant Earth Technologies to be the primary supplier to Verdant’s $550m biomass power station in the Hunter Valley.

This article was developed in collaboration with Sweetman Renewables, a Stockhead advertiser at the time of publishing.

 This article does not constitute financial product advice. You should consider obtaining independent advice before making any financial decisions.