The Bugwood Network

Wood for Energy:

  • The use of wood for energy is projected to reach between 2.8 and 3 quadrillion BTU's by the year 2000.
  • In the U.S., the forest products industries themselves are the major users of wood for fuel, accounting for 69 percent of wood fuel consumed in 1992.  Residential use, utilities, and other industries consume the remaining 31 percent.
  • Production of liquid fuels from woody biomass is not economical at this time, but research is being conducted to lower costs.
  • USDA Forest Service projects estimated woodenergy use  to increase from a base of 2.67 quads (quadrillion BTU's) in 1986 to about 3 quads in 2000, 3.35 quads in 2020, 3.5 in 2030, and 3.7 quads in 2040.
  • In 1993, wood and wood waste used as fuel accounted for 97 percent of nonelectric renewable energy consumption, excluding ethanol.  Nonelectric uses include steam production for industry and heat for residential dwellings.
  • Wood for non-electrical fuel uses is expected to increase from 2.09 quads (quadrillion BTU's) in 1993 to 2.61 quads in 2010, an annual growth rate of 1.3 percent in about 17 years.
  • For electrical power generation, the Department of Energy (DOE) projects wood use at approximately 0.5 quad (quadrillion BTU's) in 2000 and about 3 quads in 2030, assuming that wood comprises more than half the energy derived from forest and agricultural residues and municipal solid waste.
  • Lumber mills and other primary processing industries use mill residuessuch as log trimmings, sawdust, and barkfor 18% of industrial wood energy use.
  • Regional differences in wood energy use are due to the location of wood resources and woodconsuming industries.  The South has the largest share of consumption, followed by the West, the Northeast, and the Midwest.
  • Methanol or wood alcohol is the first and most common liquid fuel that can be produced from wood.  A number of other possible fuels or fuel additives can be produced from wood, including diesel fuel, methyl tertiary butyl ether, ethyl tertiary butyl ether, isopropyl alcohol, secbutyl alcohol, tertiary butyl alcohol, and tertamylmethyl ether.
  • With practices similar to modern agriculture, plantations of highyield, fastgrowing trees could produce up to 10 tons of biomass per acre per year.  The establishment of such plantations on a large scale could provide a steady source of renewable fuel for cogeneration power plants to produce electricity and steam or as a raw material for chemical or alcohol production.
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University of GeorgiaThe Bugwood Network Forestry Images The Bugwood Network and Forestry Images Image Archive and Database Systems
The University of Georgia - Warnell School of Forestry and Natural Resources and
College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences - Dept. of Entomology
Last updated on Thursday, March 20, 2003 at 10:18 AM
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