Western States Wood Energy Team Forum 2016

The Untapped Forest Resource – Renewable Wood Energy

Detailed Agenda

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Tuesday 9/27

12:00 PM

Field Trip

Biomass in Wildfire and Energy

1.1

5:00 PM

Adjourn

Wednesday 9/28

8:00 AM

Breakfast at Hotel  

8:30 AM

Welcome and Opening Remarks

8:45 AM

Keynote 

Forest Management under the Big Sky: State and Federal Partnerships in Restoration

2.1

9:15 AM

Insights and Innovations from the Western State Wood Energy Teams
Part 1 - AK, CA, ID, OR

2.2

10:30 AM

Networking Break

11:00 AM

Insights and Innovations from the Western State Wood Energy Teams
Part 2 - AZ, CO, MT, NE, WA

2.3

12:00 PM

Lunch at Hotel  

1:00 PM

Panel

The Wood Energy Calculator: Overview & Training on Project Assessment Tool

2.4

2:00 PM

Community Biomass Handbooks: Biomass Enterprise Development in the Digital Age

2.5

2:30 PM

Networking Break

3:00 PM

Panel

Biomass and our Low-Carbon Energy Future

2.6

3:30 PM

Developing a National Woodchip Heating Fuel Quality Standard

2.7

4:00 PM

Wood Utilization Team Reports from Montana and Oregon

2.8

4:30 PM

Open Discussion

2.9

5:00 PM

Reception at Hotel (Cash Bar & Light Appetizers)

7:00 PM

Adjourn. Dinner on your own.

Thursday 9/29

8:00 AM

Breakfast at Hotel

8:30 AM

Welcome and Opening Remarks

8:45 AM

Keynote  

Dave Atkins
MT Congressional Delegates (Sen. Tester, Sen. Daines, Rep. Zinke

3.1

9:15 AM

Panel

Frontiers in Biochar

3.2

10:30 AM

Networking Break

11:00 AM

Panel

Integrating Sustainable Biofuels and Bio-Products into Forest Industry Supply Chains

3.3

11:30 AM

Bioenergy Alliance Network of the Rockies (BANR)

3.4

12:00 PM

Lunch at Hotel  

1:00 PM

Panel

Integrating Biomass in High-Performance Buildings

3.5

1:30 PM

 

Project Development Insights

3.6

2:30 PM

Networking Break

3:00 PM

Discussion

The Future of Statewide Wood Energy Teams

3.7

4:00 PM

Highlights and Take-Aways

3.8

5:00 PM

Adjourn. Safe travels.



DAY 1 (Tuesday, 9/27)

Field Trip

1.1

Visit the birthplace of the US Forest Service Fuels for Schools Biomass Energy Program - the Bitterroot National Forest. The first stop will be at the site of the 2016 Roaring Lion fire outside of Hamilton, where a timber thinning project that was planned to reduce hazardous fuels in the wildland urban interface was usurped by a July 2016 wildfire that destroyed sixteen homes.

The second stop will be Darby School’s wood chip energy system and their Community Partnership fuel collection yard where they offer tax deductions for small-diameter trees donated from thinning projects of community landowners.



DAY 2 (Wednesday, 9/28)

Keynote
Forest Management under the Big Sky: State and Federal Partnerships in Restoration

Presenter: John Tubbs

2.1

 

Insights and Innovations from the Western State Wood Energy Teams
Part 1 (AK, CA, ID, OR)

2.2

In these two sessions, we’ll meet the State Wood Energy Teams active in the western states of Alaska, California, Idaho, Oregon, Washington, Arizona, Colorado, Montana and Nebraska.

With State Teams being at different stages of development and implementation, there will be lots to share and learn of varied strategies, successes and sage advice.

  • ALASKA: Devany Plentovich - Presentation: pdf
  • CALIFORNIA: Angie Lottes - Presentation: pdf
  • IDAHO: Rick Brenneman - Presentation: n/a
  • OREGON: Marcus Kauffman - Presentation: n/a

 

Insights and Innovations from the Western State Wood Energy Teams
Part 2 (AZ, CO, MT, NE, WA)

2.3

In these two sessions, we’ll meet the State Wood Energy Teams active in the western states of Alaska, California, Idaho, Oregon, Washington, Arizona, Colorado, Montana and Nebraska.

With State Teams being at different stages of development and implementation, there will be lots to share and learn of varied strategies, successes and sage advice.

  • ARIZONA: Buck Sanchez - Presentation: pdf
  • COLORADO: Kristina Hughes - Presentation: pdf
  • MONTANA: Julie Kies - Presentation: pdf
  • NEBRASKA: Heather Norbert - Presentation: pdf
  • WASHINGTON: Peter Moulton - Presentation: pdf

 

The Wood Energy Calculator:
Overview and Training on a Project Assessment Tool

Presenters: Ben Bell-Walker; Dennis Becker

2.4

This session will feature an hour-long, interactive review and training session on the Wood Energy Financial Calculator, a web-based tool (www.woodenergyproject.com/calculator) that allows users to calculate payback feasibility for switching a facility from fossil fuels to wood. Participants will be invited to contribute their insights into ways to improve the design and parameters of the tool for greater public use, and will gain familiarity with it in order to be able to teach others how to use it for facility evaluations.

Presentation: pdf (Ben Bell Walker)

 

Community Biomass Handbooks:
Biomass Enterprise Development in the Digital Age

Presenters: Marcus Kauffman; Dennis Becker

2.5

Forest collaboratives are increasingly important institutions to advance federal forest restoration. Despite increased investment and support, most groups lack the capacity to engage in biomass enterprise development and collaborative restoration.

The “Community Biomass Handbook Volume 3: Biomass Product Manufacturing Opportunities” was developed by the USDA Forest Service, Oregon State University, Oregon Department of Forestry, and the University of Idaho to help business partnerships and community groups working on restoring forested landscapes rapidly explore and evaluate appropriate-scale biomass utilization business models. The handbook combines an interactive economic model of select biomass utilization technologies and illustrated case-stories of successful forest biomass based businesses from around the Pacific Northwest in an eBook.

Presentation: pdf (Marcus Kauffman), pdf (Dennis Becker)

YouTube: Blue Mountain Forest Partners

 

Biomass and our Low-Carbon Energy Future

Presenters: Marcus Kauffman; Dennis Becker

2.6

Public policy and practice have inextricably linked carbon and forests. Favorable policies to incent the use of forest biomass for renewable energy production would provide a broad suite of ecological and economic benefit. However, national carbon and forest policy remains fractious. This panel will describe the pioneering work of five states to incorporate biomass energy into their state Clean Power Plan submissions. The EPA’s Clean Power Plan (CPP) is the Obama Administration’s flagship effort to reduce the carbon content of the nation’s electrical energy mix.

Presentation: pdf (Marcus Kauffman)

 

Developing a National Woodchip Heating Fuel Quality Standard

Presenter: Adam Sherman

2.7

This session will outline the need for woodchip heating fuel quality standards, while providing an overview of the current USFS-funded initiative to develop a national quality standard, and exploring the pros and cons of different approaches. Adam is looking forward to getting feedback on this endeavor from workshop participants.

Presentation: pdf (Adam Sherman)

 

Wood Utilization Team Reports from Montana and Oregon

Presenters: Julie Kies; Timm Locke

2.8

Montana (Julie Kies)

Montana’s Building More with Wood initiative is advancing the demand and use for wood products in Montana. This multi-faceted initiative includes development of an Advanced Wood Construction curriculum, launch of a forest business promotion campaign that includes creation of the online Montana Wood Products Directory, and implementation of the Governor’s Executive Order to lead by example by using Montana wood in state government buildings. Next steps include deploying a targeted marketing campaign aimed at Montana architects, engineers and builders.

Presentation: pdf (Julie Kies)

Oregon (Timm Locke)

Efforts around advancing mass timber buildings in Oregon.

Presentation: pdf (Timm Locke)

 

Open Discussion

Moderator: Julie Kies

2.9

This facilitated session encourages workshop participants to continue group dialogue and discussion on the day’s topics.  Engaging both speakers and participants, we will summarize topics from the day, address unanswered questions, exchange ideas, and allow participants to raise topics that they hope to explore and learn from the workshop and extensive network of expertise in the room. 



DAY 3 (Thursday, 9/29)

Keynote

Dave Atkins (Forest Business Network)
MT Congressional Delegates: Sen. Tester (video), Sen. Daines (staffer), Rep. Zinke (staffer)

3.1

 

Frontiers in Biochar

Presenters: Jonah Levine; Deborah Dumroese; Greg Stangl; Eric Roussel

3.2

Biochar is a suite of products made from cellulosic material that is finding uses in agriculture, horticulture, environmental remediation, and filtration. Common raw materials include wood, grass, bio-solids and other residues. Biochar is a rapidly evolving space with a wide variety of business approaches vying for dominance in the marketplace. Presenters will share first-hand insights from business and research efforts and insights about how to support additional commercialization efforts.

Presentation: pdf (Jonah Levine)

Presentation: pdf (Debbie Page-Dumroese)

Presentation: pdf (Eric Roussel)

Presentation: pdf (Greg Stangl)

 

Integrating Sustainable Biofuels and Bio-Products into Forest Industry Supply Chains

Presenter: Maureen Essen

3.3

This five-year, $5.3 million USDA-NIFA Biomass Research and Development Initiative (BRDI) project has spurred advances in a wide array of biomass and bioenergy related fields, producing products and outcomes that benefit a broad range of stakeholders.

The project brought together an unprecedented team representing five universities, three USDA Forest Service Research Stations, a USDA Forest Service Technology and Development Center, and six industry partners. Research, development, and outreach activities were conducted in eleven states, and resulted in critical advances in biomass feedstock logistics, conversion technology, bioproduct development, and our understanding of the social, environmental and economic impacts of using forest biomass for bioenergy and bioproducts.

Presentation: pdf (Mo Essen)

 

Bioenergy Alliance Network of the Rockies (BANR)

Presenters: Tim Reader; Kristina Hughes

3.4

The Bioenergy Alliance Network of the Rockies (BANR) is a regional collaborative effort to investigate the opportunities and obstacles to producing transportation fuels using the region's mountain pine beetle killed feedstock. During this session we will review the motivations behind our BANR partnership, some accomplishments in key content areas to date, expectations we have moving forward, as well as recent challenges the partnership has faced and some new directions that have come across our horizon since the grant was awarded in 2014.

BANR is one of seven bioenergy USDA-NIFA AFRI CAPs in the nation.

Presentation: pdf (Tim Reader)

 

Integrating Biomass in High-Performance Buildings

Presenter: Ben Bell-Walker

3.5

With ASHRAE, International Green Construction Code, and LEED intending to merge their respective green building standards into one in the coming years, understanding high-performance building codes and standard requirements is key. This session will focus mainly on ASHRAE standard 189.1, which will be the basis for commercial and high-rise residential green buildings, examining the challenges that remain towards incorporating wood energy systems in this standard.

The second part of this presentation will look at current requirements for biomass energy systems within the new LEED version 4 rating system.

Presentation: pdf (Ben Bell-Walker)

 

Project Development Insights

Presenters: Adam Sherman; Greg Stangl; Meagan Nuss

3.6

Adam Sherman: The Long and Winding Road: Wood Heat Project Development

Adam Sherman served a project advisor to a non-profit housing organization that is currently installing a central wood heating system for an existing 104 unit affordable housing complex in Southern Vermont. The project includes replacing old oil boilers in 22 buildings and connecting these buildings into a central hot water heating network. Sherman will discuss the numerous steps along the long pathway the project has taken and explore the pros and cons of various elements of the project design and configuration. Sherman will also explore lessons learned and ideas for how wood heating projects can be structured to ensure quality and help drive down capital costs.

Presentation: pdf (Adam Sherman)


Gregory Stangl: Adventures in Bioenergy Project Finance

As developers, owners and operators of three biomass gasification plants in California as well as thermal projects in Europe we have unique insight into the challenges of financing projects which most the rest of the world considers un-financeable. Through the use of guerrilla finance we will discuss strategies and tactics for getting bioenergy projects off the paper and into the ground. We will also discuss what hasn't worked with strategies for avoiding the payment of unnecessary dumb tax.

Presentation: pdf (Greg Stangl)


Meagan Nuss: Compact Containers and District Heating: Two Models of Community Energy

Successful biomass projects combine appropriate technology with communities that are driven to take energy into their own hands. Meagan will discuss two working models of biomass community energy - one using a containerized pellet system, and the other using a hog fuel district heating system.

Presentation: pdf (Meagan Nuss)

 

The Future of Statewide Wood Energy Teams

Moderator: Angie Lottes

3.7

 

Highlights and Take-Aways

Moderator: Julie Kies

3.8

In this facilitated wrap-up session, we will summarize popular themes and concepts that surfaced during the workshop. Reviewing what we’ve heard and learned, the group discussion will be aimed at addressing outstanding questions and challenges, and sharing ideas and next step actions toward the advancement of wood biomass energy.



Presenters & Moderators

Dennis Becker, University of Idaho, College of Natural Resources

Dr. Dennis Becker is an Associate Professor and Director of the Policy Analysis Group at the University Idaho in the Department of Natural Resource & Society. He received a Ph.D. in Natural Resource Sciences from the University of Idaho in 2002, was a Resources For the Future Fellow, Fulbright Fellow, and post doc with the USDA Forest Service, Pacific Northwest Research Station. Dr. Becker is the author of numerous scientific papers and agency reports. His research focuses on policy development, evaluation, and analysis of social and economic impacts in the areas of forest management, bioenergy, carbon accounting, and related natural resource topics. He conducts policy analysis for various congressional, legislative, agency, and stakeholder inquiries in the US and abroad.

 

Ben Bell-Walker, Biomass Thermal Energy Council

Ben Bell-Walker is the Technical Affairs Manager for the Biomass Thermal Energy Council. He holds a Master of Engineering degree in Energy and Environmental Systems Engineering from Boston University and has his EIT in Electrical Engineering. He leads technical projects at BTEC in codes and standards and research in areas such as boiler efficiency, green buildings, biomass fuel quality, and combined heat and power.

 

Deborah Dumroese, USFS, Rocky Mountain Research Station

Debbie Dumroese has worked for the Rocky Mountain Research Station for 32 years looking at changes in productivity associated with harvest operations and site preparations. In addition, she has worked for the past 10 years on the impact of adding biochar to western forests, range, and mine sites.

 

Maureen Essen, USFS, Rocky Mountain Research Station

Maureen Essen is a social scientist working at the University of Montana and the US Forest Service Rocky Mountain Research Station in Missoula, MT. Her biomass related work has focused on addressing science needs of national forest managers and communicating research results to various audiences.

Maureen Essen

 

Kristina Hughes, Colorado State Forest Service

Kristina Hughes is the Education and Outreach Coordinator with the Colorado Wood Utilization and Marketing program, housed within the Colorado State Forest Service. Kristina has been enthusiastically progressing within this position since March 2011, primarily and passionately working with communities, forest product businesses, dedicated and supportive consultants, as well as other valuable and resourceful individuals and organizations both within the Colorado State Forest Service and beyond. She earned both of her Bachelor’s degrees from Colorado State University (CSU) in forestry and natural resource management and is currently working on her Master’s degree in forest sciences at CSU with a project focused on the positive benefits and other radiating economic and environmental effects of financing forest products businesses in Colorado. In addition to her gratifying work both professionally and academically, Kristina enjoys spending as much time outside as possible, preferably with her dog Clover.

Kristina Hughes

 

Marcus Kauffman, Oregon Department of Forestry

Marcus Kauffman serves as the Biomass Resource Specialist for the Oregon Department of Forestry. In this position he aims to create, enhance, and sustain viable markets for the by-products of forest management and forest products manufacturing.

Marcus provides technical assistance, project development resources, and biomass supply information to public and private interests across the state. A firm believer in coordinated collective action, he co-chairs the Oregon Forest Biomass Working Group, leads the Oregon Statewide Wood Energy Team and serves on the board of directors of the Biomass Thermal Energy Council. He has a keen interest in growing the biomass industry and deepening its impact on working forests, rural communities, and the forest products industry.

Marcus has extensive experience developing public-private partnerships to improve natural resource management and foster sustainable economic development. His background includes rural economic development, renewable energy, community-based fire planning, federal forest restoration and natural resource policy.

Prior to joining the Oregon Department of Forestry, Marcus owned an independent consultancy, East Fork Consulting, which delivered project development solutions to advance the bio-energy economy.

 

Julie Kies, Regional Wood and Biomass Utilization Coordinator, Northern and Intermountain Region, USDA Forest Service

Julie Kies is the Regional Wood and Biomass Utilization Coordinator for the Northern and Intermountain Regions of the USDA Forest Service.  In this position, Julie provides technical assistance and project support to wood and biomass product manufacturing and use throughout the states of Montana, Idaho, Utah, Nevada, North Dakota and Western Wyoming.  Prior to joining the Forest Service in June 2016, Julie served as Forest Products and Biomass Program Manager for Montana Department of Natural Resources and Conservation for nine years.  In that position, Ms. Kies lead both the Montana Wood Energy Team and Wood Utilization Team in initiatives focused on expanding biomass for energy, bolstering wood-based businesses and markets, and enhancing awareness of the benefits of wood as a responsible choice.

Julie Kies

 

Jonah Levine, Confluence Energy, LLC

Jonah Levine holds degrees in Applied Ecology BS and Utility Engineering MS—has worked for profit, B Corp, non for profit and government entities. Jonah works to turn underutilized biomass into biochar and energy products.
Levine has been on the leading edge commercializing biochar production and utilization operations in the US and abroad.
Applications include – retail garden and pet products, industrial reclamation and remediation, horticultural use.

Jonah Levine

 

Timm Locke, Oregon Forest Research Institute

Timm Locke, director of forest products, leads OFRI’s Forest Products Promotion and Education Program. The program aims to create and strengthen demand for traditional and innovative Pacific Northwest wood products among professionals who design, specify and construct commercial buildings. Locke brings a passion for wood products and extensive building products marketing experience to the position. He has worked as a product publicity manager for the Western Wood Products Association and was a principal and public relations director at KnollGroup in Portland before starting his own Portland-based public relations and marketing agency, Pipeline PR + Marketing, in 2002.

Timm Locke

 

Angie Lottes, The Watershed Research and Training Center

Angie Lottes

Angie Lottes

 

Meagan Nuss, Wisewood

Meagan Nuss has a diverse history across the biomass energy and forest industries, with a background in forest collaboratives, industrial agroforestry, academia and working landscapes. As Wisewood's Project Development Coordinator, Meagan acts as the client liaison, leads district energy development, fosters regional partnerships and supports policy work. Meagan received an MS in Forest Ecosystems and Society from Oregon State University and a BA in Environmental Studies from Lewis & Clark College, and serves on the board of the Build Local Alliance.

Meagan Nuss

 

Tim Reader, Colorado State Forest Service

Tim Reader has been with the Colorado State Forest Service 15 years and is responsible for wood products utilization program development and administration. In this capacity he provides technical and business assistance, applied, research, education and outreach. Prior to his employment with the Colorado State Forest Service, he spent five years as an Inventory Forester with the White Mountain Apache Tribe in Arizona and before that as a quality control technician for Dyno Polymers is White City, Oregon. Tim obtained his Master's in Forestry from Northern Arizona University in Flagstaff and his Bachelor's in Wood Science and Technology from Colorado State in Fort Collins.

Tim Reader

 

Eric Roussel, Nevada Division of Forestry

Eric Roussel

Eric Roussel

 

Adam Sherman, Manager, Biomass Energy Resource Center

Adam Sherman is Manager of the Biomass Energy Resource Center (BERC) housed at the Vermont Energy Investment Corporation. Adam has more than 20 years of experience in the biomass energy industry, and has directed BERC’s technology and biomass fuel supply activities for over ten years. Adam’s work focuses on wood energy program design and delivery for government agencies and technical consulting services for assessing wood fuel and heating project feasibility throughout North America. Adam serves as Chairman of the Northeast Biomass Thermal Working Group and on the Editorial Board of Biomass Magazine.

Adam Sherman

 

Gregory Stangl, CEO, Phoenix Energy, LLC

Gregory Stangl has been working in the energy and environment field since 1999 when he led the buyout and subsequent turnaround of Energy Investors, a firm dedicated to improving air quality in Europe by replacing coal furnaces and improving facility energy efficiency. Developments in Europe led the business into to the biomass gasification and biochar arena and in 2007 Phoenix Energy was created to focus on the US market for community biomass. In addition to development Mr. Stangl brings extensive expertise in project and corporate finance which provides Phoenix a key edge in bringing projects to fruition. Prior to his work in the energy and environment field, Mr. Stangl worked for several years as a venture capitalist based in Paris and Warsaw and for the United Nations Development Program. Mr. Stangl currently serves on the Board of Trustees for the University of Calif. at Merced and as Vice-charman of the Bioenergy Association of California. Mr. Stangl holds an MBA and a Masters' of International Affairs, both from Columbia University.

Greg Stangl

 

John E. Tubbs, Director, Montana Department of Natural Resources and Conservation

John Tubbs was appointed by Governor Steve Bullock as Director of the Montana Department of Natural Resources and Conservation (DNRC) in January 2013, to support the agency’s mission to help ensure that Montana’s land and water resources provide benefits for present and future generations. Prior to his appointment at DNRC, John served as Deputy Assistant Secretary for Water and Science at the Department of Interior for three and a half years. John started his career for the State of Montana in 1985 and worked for 25 years in both policy and financial programs at DNRC before leaving to D.C.

John Tubbs