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EU deforestation traceability system to launch in Nov

  • Market: Agriculture, Biomass, Chemicals
  • 30/04/24

Clarification: Paragraphs one, three and four have been changed to clarify the implementation deadlines for the EU deforestation regulation, after it was established that the expert's initial interpretation of the deadlines mischaracterized the situation. Argus published a clarification on 28 June 2024 with more details.

The European Commission is set to unveil an information system to help with the implementation of the EU deforestation regulation (EUDR) in November, but different implementation deadlines for larger and smaller firms may constitute trading barriers in the interim for certain wood categories, the senior policy officer at industry association Bioenergy Europe, Daniel Reinemann, told the Argus Biomass Conference.

The Due Diligence Statements (DDS) information system will provide a "due diligence statement number and [companies] link it" with the product they are producing and selling to trace the origin of products throughout the supply chain, as required by the EUDR, Reinemann said at last week's conference.

Mandatory due diligence under the EUDR for operators and traders selling and importing wood products — among other commodities — into the EU will apply from 30 December 2024 for operators of wood products covered by the EUTR (EU Timber Regulations), applying to all operators, including small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). However, EUDR expands the scope of wood products that are covered and SMEs producing these new products will have until the end of June 2025 to come into compliance with the new legislation. These products include among others wood charcoal, wood wool, wood flour, tools and handles, kitchen and tableware made of wood, and other wood products.

The different implementation start dates may result in challenges for trading between the two company sizes for the affected wood categories, Reinemann said. For instance, a small operator selling such products to a large company would have different levels of requirements to meet in the first half of 2025 when the small operator will not be obliged to meet EUDR requirements, he said.

Some operators that lack the logistical and cost capacity to meet the EUDR requirements may decide to exit the market, but "realistically, we do not know how significant that share is", Reinemann said.

The US Department of Agriculture (USDA) has previously commented on concerns over the implementation of this regulation, arguing that it could limit US wood product exports to Europe.

Despite the challenges surrounding implementation of the EUDR regulation, "the accountability [it will require operators to have] will give [the public] a lot more faith in the system", Reinemann said.

"The regulation will primarily impact forest owners as feedstocks are the first to be targeted," Bioenergy Europe policy director Irene di Padua said in an interview in February.

The EUDR will apply to imports of cattle, cocoa, coffee, oil palm, soya, rubber, wood and their derived products to the EU.


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16/07/24

Yemen’s Houthis attack ships in Red Sea, Mediterranean

Yemen’s Houthis attack ships in Red Sea, Mediterranean

Singapore, 16 July (Argus) — Yemen-based Houthi militants have launched three military operations in the Red Sea and the Mediterranean, Yemen's state-owned news agency Saba said on 15 July. The Houthis carried out multiple attacks against an Israel-owned oil product tanker in the Red Sea, according to US Central Command (Centcom) on 16 July. The Houthis used three surface vessels to attack the Panama-flagged and Monaco-operated Bentley I , which was carrying vegetable oil from Russia to China, Centcom said. There was no reported damage or injuries, Centcom said. Bentley I loaded 39,480t of sunflower oil at Russia's Taman port on 3 July, according to global trade analytics platform Kpler. The Houthis also separately attacked a Marshall Islands-owned, Greek-operated crude oil tanker Chios Lion with an uncrewed surface vessel (USV) in the Red Sea. The USV caused damage but the Chios Lion has not requested assistance and there have not been any reported injuries, Centcom said. The Houthis described its hit as "accurate and direct", according to Saba. The Chios Lion loaded 60,000t (387,000 bl) of high-sulphur straight-run fuel oil on 30 June and 30,000t of fuel oil on 18 June, both at Russia's Tuapse port, according to Kpler. It planned to unload these in China on 22 July. The Houthis have claimed responsibility for these two ship attacks, which were targeted "owing to violation ban decision of access to the ports of occupied Palestine by the company that owns the ship". The Houthis also claimed a third attack on the Olvia with the Iraqi Islamic Resistance in the Mediterranean, with this having "successfully achieved its objective". The Olvia loaded about 6,300t of very-low sulphur fuel oil at Israel's Haifa port on 12 July and was scheduled to unload this at Israel's Ashdod refinery on 13 July. Crude prices were largely lower at 04:00 GMT. The Ice front-month September Brent contract was at $84.63/bl, lower by 22¢/bl from its settlement on 15 July when the contract ended 18¢/bl lower. The Nymex front-month August crude contract was at $81.65/bl, down by 26¢/bl from its settlement on 15 July when the contract ended 30¢/bl lower. By Tng Yong Li Send comments and request more information at feedback@argusmedia.com Copyright © 2024. Argus Media group . All rights reserved.

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Japan’s Erex cuts biomass-fired power output in June


15/07/24
News
15/07/24

Japan’s Erex cuts biomass-fired power output in June

Tokyo, 15 July (Argus) — Japanese renewable electricity producer Erex reduced its biomass-fired power generation output in June compared with a year earlier, according to the company data. Erex's combined biomass-fired output across the 50MW Saiki, the 75MW Buzen, and the 49MW Nakagusuku power plant in June fell by 8.5pc from a year earlier to 108GWh. The company does not publish output data for its 75MW Ofunato plant, while the 20MW Tosa plant has been under periodic maintenances since March. Erex operates a total of 269MW of biomass capacity in Japan, including Ofunato, burning mainly imported wood pellets and palm kernel shells. The company aims to start coal and biomass co-firing generation at the 149MW Itoigawa plant that has only consumed coal so far. The company plans to start operations at two more biomass plants, the 75MW Sakaide Hayashida in 2025 and the 300MW Niigata Mega Bio around 2029-2030. Erex is also accelerating biomass projects in southeast Asia, aiming to build up to 19 generation plants in Vietnam and five in Cambodia that will burn mainly wood residue and chips, in addition to several wood pellet plants in both countries. By Takeshi Maeda Erex's biomass generation in June 2024 Capacity(MW) Generations(GWh) Start of Operations Tosa 20.0 0.0 Jun-13 Saiki 50.0 31.0 Nov-16 Buzen 75.0 46.0 Jan-20 Nakagusuku 49.0 31.0 Jul-21 Ofunato 75.0 - Jan-20 Total 269.0 108.0 Source: Erex Erex biomass generation (MWh) Send comments and request more information at feedback@argusmedia.com Copyright © 2024. Argus Media group . All rights reserved.

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Brazil ups outlook for 2023-24 crop to 299mn t


11/07/24
News
11/07/24

Brazil ups outlook for 2023-24 crop to 299mn t

Sao Paulo, 11 July (Argus) — Brazil raised the outlook for its 2023-24 grain and oilseed crops for the third consecutive month in July, driven by favorable weather supporting the second corn crop. National supply company Conab now expects 2023-24 output at 299.3mn metric tonnes (t), up by 1.7mn t from a month ago. But the projection for the current cycle is 6.4pc — or 20.5mn t — below the record 319.8mn t in 2022-23, following the negative effects of the El Nino weather phenomenon over main producing states earlier in the season. The 2023-24 crop is set to yield 3,752 kg/hectare (ha), 7.9pc below the 4,072 kg/ha in the last cycle. That also compares with the 3,739 kg/ha forecast in June. Estimated sowed area expanded by 170,200ha to 79.8mn ha this month, which is a 1mn ha tumble from the prior season's acreage. Corn crop leads monthly gain Conab expects Brazil to produce over 115.9mn t of corn in 2023-24, including the country's first, second and third crops. Estimated volumes rose by 1.8mn t from the previous estimate of 114.1mn t, as the average yield outlook increased to 5,553 kg/ha from 5,478 kg/ha and the projection for planted area was up by 25,000ha to 20.9mn ha. The 2022-23 corn crop produced a record 131.9mn t, with 22.3mn ha sowed and average yields of 5,923 kg/ha. The 2023-24 second corn crop — also known as the winter crop — accounted for most of the upwards revision this month. The production forecast rose to 90mn t from 88.1mn t, but remained below the 2022-23 crop's 102.4mn t record. Expected yields rose to 5,556 kg/ha from 5,478 kg/ha in June. That is also 6.7pc below the prior cycle's yields. As for planted area, the forecast increased by 47,000ha and was maintained at almost 16.2mn ha. The 2022-23 second corn crop was sowed in 17.2mn ha. The summer corn cycle — also known as the first crop — is set to reach almost 23.4mn t, down by nearly 180,000t from a month prior and 3.9mn t below the last season. The estimate for acreage decreased by 23,900ha, but remains at around 4mn ha, approximately 438,000ha below the 2022-23 planted area. Projected yields dropped to 5,852 kg/ha from 5,862 kg/ha, also down from last season's 6,160 kg/ha. The outlook for the third corn crop — sowed exclusively in northern and northeastern states — continues at 2.4mn t, surpassing the prior cycle by 254,800t. Planted area is now set to reach 657,800ha, up by 2,800ha from the prior month's estimate and 632,500ha in 2022-23. The outlook for yields was down to 3,663 kg/ha from 3,670 kg/ha but is 7.5pc up on the year. Soybean output decreases slightly Brazil's 2023-24 soybean crop is set to total approximately 147.3mn t, following a 16,900t reduction from a month ago. That is a 4.7pc drop from the 2022-23 season's record of 154.6mn t, but the cycle remains on track to be the second largest crop in the country's history. The monthly output decrease reflects damage caused by floods in the Rio Grande do Sul state, which reduced its outlook by 540,000t to 19.7mn t. Losses were then mostly offset by an upwards revision in Para state, where higher yields and an increase in expected area rose the output forecast to almost 4.1mn t. National average yields are now estimated at 3,202 kg/ha, down from 3,205 kg/ha in June and 3,507 kg/ha in 2022-23. Conab projects that the 2023-24 soybean crop was sowed at a record of 46mn ha, compared with 44.1mn ha in the prior cycle. Wheat, cotton down Brazil's 2024 wheat production is now set to total almost 9mn t, down by 109,500t on the month and 859,000t above last year's output. Yields are down to 2,917 kg/ha from 2,945 kg/ha, while the expected planted area continues at approximately 3.1mn ha. That compares with 2,331 kg/ha and almost 3.5mn ha in 2023. 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But the outlook of domestic consumption rose to 84.3mn t from almost 84.2mn t a month ago — about 5.7pc above the prior season — led by a record demand from the corn ethanol and animal feed sectors. Soybean exports also continue set to reach 92.4mn t, down from almost 101.9mn t of soybeans exported in the 2022-23 season. By Nathalia Giannetti Send comments and request more information at feedback@argusmedia.com Copyright © 2024. Argus Media group . All rights reserved.

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Australia’s Commodity Ag to start WA grain exports


11/07/24
News
11/07/24

Australia’s Commodity Ag to start WA grain exports

Sydney, 11 July (Argus) — Australian agribusiness Commodity Ag will export its first cargo from its Albany port terminal facility this week, boosting export competition in Western Australia against established grain handlers CBH and Bunge. The company intends to export 600,000 t/yr from its Albany port facility, but said its capacity would be constrained by other users of the general-purpose berth. The loading capacity of the mobile shiploader indicated in its ACCC application would be a quarter of CBH's total loading capacity at Albany, according to Southern Ports. Western Australia's bulk grain exports are dominated by CBH — which has port terminals at Geraldton, Kwinana, Esperance and Albany — and Bunge, which has a port terminal at Bunbury. But barriers to entry for smaller port terminal service providers such as Commodity Ag have been reduced by the availability of mobile shiploaders , which allow trucks to unload grain directly in the port and onto a vessel. Commodity Ag's Albany facility will use a 400 t/hr mobile shiploader to load cargoes onto Handymax-sized vessels that are approximately 50,000 deadweight tonnes, according to its March 2023 application to the Australian Competition & Consumer Commission (ACCC) to be an exempt service provider of port terminal services. Commodity Ag has no other cargoes for loading on its shipping stem accessed on 11 July. It became an exempt service provider of port terminal services in May 2023, which means the company is not required to comply with parts 3 to 6 of the Port Terminal Access (Bulk Wheat) Code of Conduct. Part 3 of the code requires a port terminal service provider to not discriminate in favour their own trading business or an exporter that is an associated entity, and not hinder access for another exporter when providing bulk grain port terminal services. Send comments and request more information at feedback@argusmedia.com Copyright © 2024. Argus Media group . All rights reserved.

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Olin declares Freeport chlor-alkali FM from hurricane


10/07/24
News
10/07/24

Olin declares Freeport chlor-alkali FM from hurricane

Houston, 10 July (Argus) — US-based chlor-alkali producer Olin declared a force majeure (FM) on 10 July for its Freeport, Texas, plant after Hurricane Beryl caused significant damage. The company said the force majeure was for all its chlor-alkali and derivative vinyl products produced at the site. Olin said it was having difficulty accessing power, raw materials, feedstocks, and other crucial services which made managing logistics and production challenging. The company was conducting a comprehensive inspection and assessment of its facility, but there was no timeline for an end to the outage. In addition to caustic soda and chlorine, the site produces several other derivative products. The company sells spot ethylene dichloride (EDC) from Freeport to overseas vinyl producers, epoxy resin, and vinyl chloride monomer (VCM) that it supplies to Shintech by direct pipeline. Shintech buys VCM from Olin under contract to support its own polyvinyl chloride (PVC) plant in Freeport, which produces roughly 1.45mn tons of PVC per year. Shintech indicated earlier in the week it did not see any significant damage to its facility after the storm and was intending to restart its operations in short order. The Olin force majeure could hinder Shintech's Freeport operations, but Shintech has not provided a timeline for its own restart and did not respond to a request for comment. Olin also supplies Dow Chemical with chlorine by direct pipeline to run Dow's isocyanate plant in Freeport. By Aaron May Send comments and request more information at feedback@argusmedia.com Copyright © 2024. Argus Media group . All rights reserved.

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