Resource Conservation and Development Area Councils
NH Wood Energy Support Team
Forming a NH Wood Energy Support Team Initiated January, 2013
The use of wood biomass for heating, cooling, process energy and electricity production has increased in New Hampshire for several years. Expanding the use of this renewable source of energy in NH is not only possible but beneficial when done within the capacity of the State’s forest resources. Continued expansion of the use of wood for energy requires increased education about forest resource availability and the use of the most efficient wood to energy technologies. Opportunities to use wood energy to replace fossil fuels can provide increased economic benefits to all residents and businesses in New Hampshire and move the state towards the Governor’s goal of using 25% Renewable Energy by 2025. Increased interaction and collaboration by those interested in the sustainable use of the State’s forest resources to provide the most environmental, economic and social benefits from the forest will help New Hampshire realize this Renewable Energy goal.
Nationally, the US Department of Agriculture has directed the US Forest Service to increase its wood to energy efforts as part of that Agency’s continuing focus on building a forest restoration economy connected to the management of all lands. By placing a strong emphasis on developing renewable energy while restoring the nation’s forests, USDA strives to create and retain sustainable rural jobs, conserve forests, and address societal needs.
For these reasons the NH State Forester and the U.S. Forest Service invite you to join to form the NH Wood Energy Support Team which will provide support to NH communities, institutions, agencies and commercial facility owners that are considering the use of wood for energy. This Team will be assembled from individuals, organizations, NH businesses, industry associations and non profits interested in the sustainable use of forest resources, development of renewable energy alternatives; from regional and community agencies sustaining local economies and meeting social needs, and from State and Federal agencies interested in maintaining and expanding the economic benefits from the state’s forest resources.
The NH Wood Energy Support Team will serve as a national pilot, testing and refining tools and methods in preparation for future combined State and USDA Forest Service wood to energy efforts. As such our plan is that results be quick and replicable. All lessons learned, significant outcomes and results, relevant data, and information products will be identified, compiled, and distributed to interested parties. Suggested actions of the NH Wood Energy Support Team include (but not limited to) the following:
The U.S. Forest Service has provided financial and technical resources to support the work of the NH Wood Energy Support Team. The North Country Resource Conservation and Development (RC&D) Area Council will facilitate the organization and initial work of the NH Wood Energy Support Team. This Team approach builds upon the RC&D Council’s effort in developing the “Community Roadmap to Renewable Woody Biomass Energy”.