Communities today are challenged to develop effective strategies that support forest ecosystem health, mitigate the effects of climate change, satisfy growing energy needs, and provide local economic opportunities. For some communities, woody biomass may be a viable option for meeting these needs and deserves serious consideration. Forests in the United States represent an important potential energy and biobased product resource. NACD, in collaboration with federal, state, and local partners is working to raise awareness about the potential for woody biomass as a primary feedstock for such products.
This Woody Biomass Desk Guide and Toolkit provides an overview of woody biomass production and utilization in the U.S., tips of how to provide effective outreach for your clientele, and educational handouts to share with your audiences. The purpose of this guide is to equip natural resource professionals and outreach specialists with the information and tools needed to increase awareness of the use of woody biomass for energy in the U.S.
Using the Woody Biomass Desk Guide and Toolkit
This Guide is designed for use by conservation district, Resource Conservation & Development and Extension professionals throughout the U.S. It also contains handouts and other resources to assist in educating respective audience.
The Desk Guide and Toolkit is a comprehensive guide comprised of the following sections:
- Reference Sections
- Case Studies
- Introductory PowerPoint Presentations
- Frequently Asked Questions
- Additional Resources
You can pick and choose from the materials in this Guide and Toolkit to create the outreach strategy or program that best meets your objectives. Whether you need to give a thirty-minute presentation to your local county commission or conduct a week-long professional development training for consulting foresters, the resources in this program can help. See Chapter 7 for specific ideas on how you can use the resources in this program to provide effective outreach to your target audience.
The Woody Biomass Desk Guide and Toolkit consists of eight chapters. Each of the first seven chapters contains a reference section, which provides background and overview information for natural resource professionals and outreach specialists. In textbook format, the reference sections are designed to increase understanding of the basic concepts for producing and using woody biomass for energy, transportation fuels, and other bioproducts. Additionally, the reference sections serve as a quick reference guides to answer questions from clients or the public about the production and utilization of woody biomass.
Desk Guide and Toolkit Chapter Topics
- Introduction and Table of Contents
- Chapter 1 – Setting the Stage
- Chapter 2 – What is Biomass? (2.5MB PDF)
- Chapter 3 – Products and Possibilities (1.7MB PDF)
- Chapter 4 – Implications of Producing and Using Woody Biomass (1.5MB PDF)
- Chapter 5 – Incentives to Produce and Use Woody Biomass (1.3MB PDF)
- Chapter 6 – Do-It-Yourself Supply Curve: Tools to Help You Get Involved in an Entrepreneurial Biomass Project (13.8MB PDF)
- Chapter 7 – Outreach and Education
- Chapter 8 – Case Studies (2.15MB PDF)
In addition to the reference sections, most of the chapters also contain handouts. These outline important points, strategies, and information that may be useful for landowners, the public, local leaders, or other audiences.
- Handout 1 – Electricity Production: Comparing Wood and Fossil Fuel Feedstocks (2MB PDF)
- Handout 2 – Woody Biomass Basics (2.25MB PDF)
- Handout 3 – Agricultural Biomass (1.5MB PDF)
- Handout 4 – Implications of Using Woody Biomass for Energy and Other Products (1.15MB PDF)
- Handout 5 – State and Local Policies and Incentives to Produce and Use Woody Biomass (1.5MB PDF)
- Handout 6 – Financing a Bioenergy Project (1.15MB PDF)
- Handout 7 – Common Concerns (1.15MB PDF)
Compilation of Case Studies (2.15MB PDF) – Chapter 8 of the Guide is a compilation of case studies. Sometimes new concepts are easier to explain with examples. As such, these case studies provide examples of both the challenges and successes of existing or planned woody biomass production and utilization projects throughout the U.S. Case studies highlight relevant points found throughout the Guide and Toolkit and may be used as background reading or outreach handouts.
Woody Biomass Microsoft PowerPoint® Presentation (10.3MB PPT) – The presentation included with this Guide provides a detailed introduction designed for an audience interested in learning more about woody biomass production and utilization. You can simplify this presentation or modify it to address the particular topic area you need to cover or for the particular audience or geographic location you are addressing.
Supplemental Case Study PowerPoint Slides (24.4MB PPT) – There is an additional set of slides included with the guide that correspond with the case studies found in chapter 8. These slides allow a presenter the opportunity to present a case study or two along with the introductory presentation.
Frequently Asked Questions – Toward the end of this guide is a set of frequently asked questions with answers. These questions were collected during a series of community forums conducted by the University of Florida, and the answers were provided by experts in the wood-to-energy field. The FAQs provide insight into the concerns and misconceptions that the public has about using wood for energy. This resource may help you prepare to answer similar questions from your audiences. Additional questions from the U.S. Department of Energy, Biomass Programs website are also included in the list.
Glossary of Terms – a glossary of terms related to woody biomass production and utilization labeled is provided at the end of this guide to familiarize you with relevant terms.
Bibliography – A bibliography of books, articles, Web sites, programs, and other tools pertaining to woody biomass production and utilization is included in Appendix C. These resources can help you expand your library and knowledge about woody biomass and may also be used to supplement the handouts for outreach activities.
Biomass Supply and Cost Profile: Matanuska-Susitna Borough-owned Lands, Alaska – Chapter 6 introduces several tools that you can use to construct supply curves for woody biomass resources in a particular area. We have used these tools in an example to construct a supply and cost profile for Matanuska-Susitna Borough-owned Lands, Alaska.
Biomass Supply and Cost Profile: Five North Florida Counties – Chapter 6 introduces several tools that you can use to construct supply curves for woody biomass resources in a particular area. We have used these tools in an example to construct a supply and cost profile for Five North Florida Counties.
Biomass Supply and Cost Profiles: Worcester, Massachusetts (3.2MB PDF) – Chapter 6 introduces several tools that you can use to construct supply curves for woody biomass resources in a particular area. We have used these tools in an example to construct a supply and cost profile for Worcester, Massachusetts.
Outreach Planning Worksheet – The Outreach Planning Worksheet is a resource that corresponds with Chapter 7 “Outreach and Education”. It is a tool that you can use to help you clarify your outreach plans and goals.
Sample Dear Neighbor Letter – This is an example of one of the outreach tools explained in Chapter 7 “Outreach and Education”. A dear neighbor letter can be a good way to reach your audience of the general public if you have their e-mail or postal addresses.
Sample News Release for Publicity – This is an example of one of the outreach tools explained in more detail in Chapter 7 “Outreach and Education”. The use of mass media to communicate with the public can be a great way to reach a broad spectrum of people with general information and few details.