Tag Archives: oregon

[NEWS] Forest Biofuel Facility Gets Go-Ahead in Oregon

– by Kurt Liedteke, April 15, 2018, Herald and News

red rockAfter countless meetings, hearings, discussions and planning, all hurdles have been cleared for construction of a new renewable energy biofuels plant in Lake County.

Red Rock Biofuels, a Colorado-based company established in 2011, has had its sights set on Lakeview since 2013 as a target location to build its first operational facility; identifying the location for its proximity to rail, highways, the Ruby natural gas pipeline and an abundance of forest bi-products to be collected and converted to jet fuel.

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[NEWS] Two New Biomass Processing Facilities Planned for Eastern Oregon

– by Rylan Boggs, May 30, 2017, Blue Mountain Eagle

johnday_orTwo biomass processing facilities are expected to be up and running in Grant County this summer.

Utilizing low-value vegetation from the Malheur National Forest, the Iron Triangle plants in Seneca and John Day will initially produce posts, poles and chips and could move into torrefied products, if the market is available. Torrefaction is the process of baking biomass into a coal-like fuel that can be burned.

The market for torrefied material depends on the Portland General Electric power plant in Boardman converting from burning coal to torrefied material, according to King Williams of Iron Triangle. PGE planned to convert the plant to biomass or shut it down entirely by 2020.

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[NEWS] Planned Biomass Facilities Still Simmering for Oregon

– by Hilary Corrigan, November 8, 2016, Bend Bulletin

la_pine_biomass_oregon

Proposed biomass facility for La Pine, Oregon

While two firms continue to develop plans for new biomass facilities in Central Oregon that would produce power and fuel, a utility continues researching whether biomass could run its coal-fired power plant in the region.

Biogreen Sustainable Energy Co., based in Vancouver, Washington, still plans to build a 25 megawatt facility — first suggested in 2009 — on a nearly 20-acre site in La Pine’s industrial park.

“We’re just on hold,” said Rob Broberg, president of the firm.

Building the $75 million project depends on securing a contract to sell the power, likely to a utility in Oregon or California trying to meet requirements for renewable energy.

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[NEWS] Juniper to Biomass Facility Proposed for Oregon

– by Eric Mortenson, October 24, 2016, Capital Press

juniper_wikipedia

(Photo: Wikipedia)

Morihara’s company announced it has refined a process for turning logging slash or other biomass into briquettes that can be burned in coal-fired electrical plants such as the one in Boardman, Ore. His company, HM3 Energy Inc., has built a $4 million demonstration plant in Troutdale, Ore., just east of Portland. It plans to license the technology and sell it worldwide. A Japanese firm, New Energy Development Co., has invested $2 million in HM3 and said it will build a production plant at an undisclosed location in Oregon.

The fuel is produced through a method called torrefaction, in which woody debris, crop residue or other plant material is essentially roasted in the absence of oxygen. The end product is a brittle, briquette-looking material that can be crushed and burned.

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[NEWS] Wood-Fired Electricity Sparks Ambitious Plans, Controversy in Oregon

– by Ted Sickinger, October 23, 2016, The Oregonian

boardman_oregon_coal_plant_pano1By year’s end, Portland General Electric will fire up its 550-megawatt power plant in Boardman for a daylong test burn, feeding 8,000 tons of pulverized, roasted wood into its boilers instead of the usual diet of coal.

The exercise is meant to gauge whether the aging fossil fuel plant could reliably generate electricity using renewable feedstock such as “torrefied” wood after its scheduled closure in 2020. If it works — technically, economically and environmentally — Oregon’s only coal-fired power plant could one day become the country’s largest biomass power plant.

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Biomass Energy Generating Controversy

– by Josh Schlossberg, September 1, 2016, Earth Island Journal

Kevin Bundy has tramped through his share of forests in California’s Sierra Nevada. Where he sees a diverse ecosystem of ponderosa pine, incense cedar, and white fir, prime wildlife habitats, and one of the world’s best buffers against climate change, many public and private land managers see something different. Of course, they too observe living forests, but they also see tinder for future wildfires, as well as an opportunity to procure home-grown, renewable biomass energy.

A senior attorney with the conservation group Center for Biological Diversity, Bundy works at the national level to ensure strict accounting of carbon emissions from the burning of biomass, and on the local level to limit the type of fuels burned by biomass facilities. He’s convinced that the nation needs to “get away from fossil fuels and shift to 100 percent renewable energy as quickly as possible,” given the threat of climate change. But while he acknowledges biomass might be renewable “in some sense,” he sees it as “something of a false solution to our climate and energy challenges” compared to other renewable sources like solar and wind.

Yet biomass is big business in the United States. In 2014, half of “renewable” energy in the US came from bioenergy – that is, from burning trees, crop residues (most often from corn and soybean harvests), manure, and even trash to produce electricity and heat, or to manufacture liquid transportation fuels like ethanol or biodiesel. Meanwhile, hydropower accounted for 26 percent, wind made up 18 percent, and solar accounted for a mere 4.4 percent. A significant increase in biomass energy production is likely as the US tries to ramp up its renewables output.

There remains considerable debate about just how prominently biomass should feature in energy planning, what with disagreements about the impact it has on forests and agricultural land, how clean it is, and its contributions to climate change. Much of the public is also confused about how biomass compares to other forms of renewable energy. This confusion reflects the conflicting scientific opinions and government policies regarding biomass energy.

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