Next Article in Journal
Do Common Silvicultural Treatments Affect Wood Density of Mediterranean Montane Pines?
Previous Article in Journal
Historic Frequency and Severity of Fire in Whitebark Pine Forests of the Cascade Mountain Range, USA
Open AccessArticle

Renewable Energy from Forest Residues—How Greenhouse Gas Emission Offsets Can Make Fossil Fuel Substitution More Attractive

1
Natural Resources Canada, Canadian Forest Service, Great Lakes Forestry Centre 1219 Queen Street East, Sault Ste. Marie, ON P6A 2E5, Canada
2
Natural Resources Canada, Canadian Forest Service, Climate Change Policy, 606-55 St. Clair Ave. East, Toronto, ON M4T 1M2, Canada
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Forests 2018, 9(2), 79; https://doi.org/10.3390/f9020079
Received: 19 December 2017 / Revised: 23 January 2018 / Accepted: 7 February 2018 / Published: 8 February 2018
(This article belongs to the Section Forest Ecology and Management)
Burning forest biomass from renewable sources has been suggested as a viable strategy to help offset greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in the energy generation sector. Energy facilities can, in principle, be retrofitted to produce a portion of their energy from biomass. However, supply uncertainties affect costs, and are an important impediment to widespread and sustained adoption of this strategy. In this paper, we describe a general approach to assess the cost of offsetting GHG emissions at co-generation facilities by replacing two common fossil fuels, coal and natural gas, with forest harvest residue biomass for heat and electricity production. We apply the approach to a Canadian case study that identifies the price of GHG offsets that could make the use of forest residue biomass feedstock attractive. Biomass supply costs were based on a geographical assessment of industrial harvest operations in Canadian forests, biomass extraction and transportation costs, and included representation of basic ecological sustainability and technical accessibility constraints. Sensitivity analyses suggest that biomass extraction costs have the largest impact on the costs of GHG emission offsets, followed by fossil fuel prices. In the context of other evaluations of mitigation strategies in the energy generation sector, such as afforestation or industrial carbon capture, this analysis suggests that the substitution of fossil fuels by forest residue biomass could be a viable and reasonably substantive short-term alternative under appropriate GHG emission pricing schemes. View Full-Text
Keywords: GHG emissions offsets; co-generation; fossil fuel substitution; cost supply curves; forest residue biomass GHG emissions offsets; co-generation; fossil fuel substitution; cost supply curves; forest residue biomass
Show Figures

Figure 1

MDPI and ACS Style

Yemshanov, D.; McKenney, D.W.; Hope, E.; Lempriere, T. Renewable Energy from Forest Residues—How Greenhouse Gas Emission Offsets Can Make Fossil Fuel Substitution More Attractive. Forests 2018, 9, 79.

Show more citation formats Show less citations formats
Note that from the first issue of 2016, MDPI journals use article numbers instead of page numbers. See further details here.

Article Access Map by Country/Region

1
Back to TopTop