Carbon removals and renewable energy company Drax Group has announced a new partnership with Molpus Woodlands Group (Molpus). The agreement will provide Drax with an option to purchase sustainably sourced woody biomass to fuel its bioenergy with carbon capture and storage (BECCS) operations in the US Southeast.
Drax will have the option to take up to 1 million green tons per year of sustainably sourced fiber under a long-term fiber supply agreement. This supply will anchor Drax's BECCS developments in the region, which will generate renewable baseload power to contribute toward US energy independence while permanently removing carbon dioxide from the atmosphere.
"The renewable power produced through BECCS will contribute to a more diverse and resilient US power grid, while supporting hundreds of jobs across the US South, particularly in rural communities," said Arabella Freeman, Senior Vice President of Biomass Strategy at Drax. "The sustainable fiber secured through this agreement with The Molpus Woodlands Group, a leading US forestry company, takes us one step closer to bringing Drax's BECCS ambitions to life."
Sustainably sourced biomass - when paired with carbon capture and storage technology - is the only carbon negative technology that can permanently remove carbon from the atmosphere while simultaneously contributing to the diversity of the power grid. The fiber to be provided through Molpus meets Drax's sustainability standards, enabling the production of high-quality carbon dioxide removals (CDR) credits that can be purchased on the voluntary carbon market to help decarbonize other organizations and industries.
Sustainable fiber is sourced from low-grade roundwood including forest thinnings and residues left over from timber harvesting. Low-grade roundwood is not suitable for sawmilling, and BECCS can provide a valuable new market for this forestry byproduct.
This partnership with Molpus represents a key milestone toward Drax realizing its intent to become a global leader in carbon removals through the implementation of BECCS technology, with the goal of capturing 6 million metric tonnes of carbon a year in the US.
"Drax shares our passion for responsible forest management and, in bringing BECCS to the Southeastern US, will provide a valuable use for the fiber sourced from sustainable forest management practices, lumber production, and other related industries," said Terrell Winstead, President and CEO at Molpus. "Together, we look forward to supplying value to the power grid, economy, environment, and local communities throughout the region for years to come."