Biomass is organic material that may be used as fuel. Burning wood and other organic material was our earliest means of generating heat and power; for many people firewood and charcoal remain essential for heating, cooking and local industry.

Recent technological advances have boosted biomass use. In Europe, South Korea and Japan, wood pellets are increasingly used to fire large power stations in order to replace coal and hit renewable energy targets. This demand drives rapid growth in global wood pellet production – rising from two million tonnes in 2000 to around 30 million tonnes in 2016, with further expansion forecast.

Some influential NGOs claim that large-scale biomass power generation is bad for the climate and for forests. The industry argues that biomass is a reliable renewable energy source that emits far less sulphur and nitrogen oxide than coal does. Pellets, is said to be sourced exclusively from sustainable forestry operations and by recovering wood that would otherwise rot or be burned as waste.

TFT began work on biomass in 2016 to support biomass industry leaders to source wood transparently and responsibly, and to engage closely with producers, NGOs and other stakeholders