Does biomass power contribute to carbon pollution?
Combatting climate change requires a holistic consideration of the power production process. Using biomass diverts millions of tons of waste material from landfills and open burning –it’s recycling agricultural and wood “waste” that would otherwise have no other use. When you’re using biomass, you’re supporting the entirety of the forestry economy by using the entire tree, rather than letting parts of it go to waste.
Doesn’t biomass power cut down trees for power?
The biomass power industry recycles forest debris and byproducts left behind from other industrial and agricultural uses. Annually, our teams recover over 68.8 million tons of forest debris that would otherwise make its way to a landfill to rot, improving forest health and dramatically reducing the risk of forest fires. For instance, California’s drought has left an estimated 66 million dead trees that increase fire risks. Biomass can help alleviate the problem by removing and repurposing the trees, thereby mitigating risk. We believe in responsible use.
Does biomass power create jobs?
Biomass power is locally made, right here in the USA –biomass power plants create local jobs. And because biomass power plants typically source materials from within 75 miles of their facilities, it reduces transport costs while creating additional work for over 15,500 local community members throughout the country.
What about wind and solar?
Because biomass is not affected by changes in weather or environmental conditions, it is a dependable complement to our diverse energy supply, helping to provide your community with always-on electricity. Our industry recycles organic byproducts into over 15 million megawatt hours of clean and green energy annually that keeps forests healthy and meets growing energy demands.
Why don’t you use wood pellets? I hear those are exported to Europe and around the world?
There’s a difference between traditional biomass and the export pellet industry which calls itself biomass. Traditional biomass uses only wood debris and agricultural leftovers. The export pellet industry grows trees specifically to cut them down and turn them into pellets. The pellet industry grows and harvests trees locally for profit overseas. America’s traditional biomass producers recycle waste into power.
Who supports biomass?
Biomass is part of the renewable solution for many states, as well as support by the following federal agencies: