Type and location define pellet fuel's quality and prospective markets. These realities differ for Western producers compared to their Eastern peers in the quest to run a successful plant.
Location, location, location, is real estate’s greatest determining factor in value, and if that real estate is a pellet plant, it also determines the product it produces. A series of forested mountain ranges-the Sierra Nevada, the Rockies and the temperate rainforests of the Pacific Northwest-span the Western United States. Many of these and other forested lands in the region are publically owned.
The opposite is true for the other half of the country. Privately owned land occupies the Eastern seaboard, the largely forested highlands in the Northeast, including the Piedmont and the Appalachian Mountains, ranging down to the Southeastern coniferous forests that occupy the Gulf coastal plain to the south. Land ownership and forest type are two components that play into what sets pellet production and distribution in the West apart from that which occurs in the East.