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Can Logging Forests for Biomass Energy Prevent Wildfire?
Will Western Communities Adapt to Climate-Driven Wildfire?
OPINION: Biomass Energy Facilities a Tool for Dealing with Forest Fuels by John Buckley, Central Sierra Environmental Resource Center
OPINION: The Fallacies of Forest “Thinning” for Fire Management by Chad Hanson, John Muir Project
In August, The Biomass Monitor hosted a debate between Chad Hanson, Ph.D., Director and Principal Ecologist for John Muir Project of Earth Island Institute and David Atkins, former Forest Service ecologist and forester and current president of Treesource, over the effectiveness of cutting trees in backcountry forests to limit the spread and intensity of wildfire.
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– by Anna Simet, February 7, 2017, Biomass Magazine
A proposed 2-MW biomass power project in California’s Mariposa County is one step closer to reality.
The Mariposa Biomass Project, a non-profit community group in Mariposa, California, recently closed escrow on two parcels for its future location, the group announced. It will be located in the Mariposa Industrial Park, near the Mariposa County Solid Waste Facility and PG&E substation.
The project received a USDA U.S. Forest Service 2016 Wood Innovations grant of $244,000, and is in the running to score a $5 million California Energy Commission EPIC grant. Stephen Smallcombe, the group’s CTO said that the EPIC grant is critical to the project moving forward. A similar biomass power plant in North Fork, California, currently being constructed by Phoenix Energy, was a previous EPIC grant recipient.
– by Warren Cornwall, January 5, 2017, Science
Drax Biomass (Daily Mail)
It took half a century for an acorn to grow into the 20-meter-tall oak tree standing here in a North Carolina hardwood forest near the banks of the Northeast Cape Fear River. But it takes just seconds to turn the oak into fuel for the furnace of a European power plant.
A logging machine—a cross between a tank and a one-armed crab—grabs the tree with a metal claw. With a screech, a spinning blade bites through the trunk. Ultimately, the thickest bits of this tree and hundreds of others from this forest will be sliced into lumber. But the limbs from large trees like this, along with entire small or crooked trees, go to a specialized mill to be squeezed into tiny wood pellets. Shipped across the Atlantic Ocean, they will likely end up fueling a giant power plant in the United Kingdom that supplies nearly 10% of the country’s electricity.
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Cellulosic Biofuels, Food Security and Land Rights
On December 15 we spoke with Kelly Stone, Policy Analyst for ActionAid USA, who discusses a new cellulosic biofuels paper along with concerns related to food security and land rights.