LOGGING UTILIZATION AND BIOMASS
Up-to-date information on timber harvesting activities is an essential element of forest management decisions. Logging utilization studies characterize harvest operations and determine what proportion of cut trees are actually used and can therefore predict the volume of biomass material left in the woods. When utilization studies are used in conjunction with statewide multi-resource inventory and periodic mill surveys, forest managers and planners gain a better understanding of the impacts of timber harvesting activities on forest inventory, how utilization trends change over time, and the potential volume of biomass available for energy production or other uses.
Northwest Advanced Renewables Alliance (NARA)
The Northwest Advanced Renewables Alliance has brought together scientists from public universities, government laboratories and private industry from throughout the Northwest, and beyond, to focus on developing ways to turn one of the region's most plentiful commodities—wood and wood waste—into jet fuel.
BBER is a participant in two phases of the NARA project: Feedstock Supply Chain Analysis and Extension Initiative. Woody biomass supply analysis is a necessary component of the NARA proposal. In order to ascertain the social, economic, and environmental impacts and sustainability of producing new wood-based energy products, the potential supply of woody biomass feedstock from various sources will be evaluated. The specific objectives of the Feedstock Supply Chain Analysis Phase are to identify and provide the primary data necessary to assess the woody biomass inventory with particular emphasis on mill and logging residue in the 4-state region and standing forest inventory in Montana and Idaho.
This project was made possible, in part, by funding from the Northwest Advanced Renewables Alliance (NARA) supported by the Agriculture and Food Research Initiative Competitive Grant no. 2011-68005-30416 from the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture.
The Forest Industry Research Group of the Bureau of Business and Economic Research is uniquely positioned to do extensive research into the historic, current and future status and uses of forest biomass. With data collected directly from mills over several decades the Forest Industry Group can and has utilized this data along with economic, forest management and research expertise to extract, collect and analyze data on biomass flows and availability.