The capital investment in biomass infrastructure will maintain steady growth during the next five years, rising from $28.2bn annually in 2010 to $33.7bn by 2016, says a report from Pike Research.

Biomass is being increasingly used to produce a wide variety of renewable energy products, the report said.

Pike Research’s study, ‘Biomass Markets and Technologies’, says that while the overall biomass industry has been in an investment hiatus over the past few years, several segments offer significant opportunity for growth.

The biofuels sector will lag behind bioenergy and bioproducts until second- and third-generation cellulosic technologies are available on a commercial scale, which is estimated to be two to three years away.

The report that includes market forecasts for key biomass categories through 2035, anticipates that the biochemical and bioenergy sectors will progress much faster than biofuels during the firm’s five-year forecast period.

Pike Research president Clint Wheelock said that biomass markets are dynamic and rapidly evolving and while research and development initiatives are very active worldwide, the biomass industry also has many proven technologies that can exploit existing feedstock sources.