Forest-origin biomass estimates were made by FPInnovations for a location in Northern Alberta, largely following the process previously established for six BC Timber Supply Areas using FPInterface (2010 13). The biomass inventory was based on 20-year harvest and road network plans for Crown land provided by Alberta Agriculture and Forestry as well as local forest tenure holders. Includes Excel data sheet which is saved separately at \\fpinnovations.lan\structure\Commun_Common\Publications\FOP/2017N38.XLSX
Current forest management policy in many jurisdictions in North America manages excess woody debris by piling and burning it, mainly as a post-harvest fire hazard abatement obligation. This study highlights three key points to consider regarding utilization and disposal of waste wood piles:
1) Allocate most woody debris waste to the biofuels sector in a cost-effective manner;
2) Allocate a small portion of woody debris (e.g. 10-15%) to implement windrow habitats where necessary to maintain mammalian biodiversity on clearcuts;
3) Limit burning of waste wood to those sites near human activity (potential fire hazard) that do not have an opportunity for biofuels or windrow purposes.
Improved storage practices will limit the risk of spontaneous combustion of bark piles during storage and support optimized planning of fuel intake at biomass conversion facilities.
Boiler efficiency can be improved by over 5% if biomass moisture can be reduced to 40% from 50%. For a boiler using 34 oven-dry tonnes (ODt)/h of biomass, improved feedstock management can save ~$1.8million/year.
Reducing biomass moisture content by 10% can increase heat value by $9.90/ODt. For a 10-Mw CHP plant purchasing ~50,000 ODt/yr savings would be $495,000 per year.
The 60 MW Nova Scotia Power (NSP) plant installed on the Port Hawkesbury Paper (PHP) mill site in Point Tupper, delivers power and required steam input for the paper mill. NSP manages the boiler operations and PHP serves as the main feedstock supplier, which includes handling the storage of the biomass on site. In April 2016, the Nova Scotia Government amended the provincial law that designated the facility as one that must run 24/7, regardless of electricity market prices. The Nova Scotia Utility and Review Board along with NSP estimated it could save $9 million in 2017 by running the Point Tupper power facility on an as-needed basis (CBC, 2016).
At a monthly energy requirement of 440 000 gigajoules (GJ), the feedstock supply needed to meet plant demand is 45 000 green metric tonnes (GMt), with a target average moisture content of 50.4% (MacLellan, 2015). The estimated available fuel energy from feedstock with a target moisture content of 50.4% is 9.93 GJ/tonne (GJ/t) (using boiler efficiency data). The estimated monthly supply requirements for the boiler are therefore equal to 45 000 GMt, or 540 000 GMt/year based on full power output. Since the April 2016 law amendment, the planned production output is 55%, with the main product being steam for the paper mill. The annual required supply to run the boiler will be approximately 300 000 GMt, as of July 2016. PHP plans to supply the boiler entirely with bark from three sources:
100 000 GMt from the Bear Head legacy pile
90 000 GMt from the paper mill’s woodroom
110 000 GMt from sawmill purchases
The goal of this bark storage trial was to measure the impact of quality (moisture content, dry matter loss) and fire risk over time for innovative pile management techniques (shape, cover, ventilation). The winter supply of bark was targeted as it is the most difficult period in the year to gain access to good quality biomass.
Innovative technologies for recovering woody biomass have the potential to reduce production costs and increase the utilization of biomass in the field. FPInnovations, in collaboration with the Canadian Wood Fibre Centre, evaluated the potential of the Gyro-Trac bioenergy baling system (BBS) to process timber-harvesting residues into commercial biomass. This evaluation occurred between January and March 2015 in the Saddle Hills of Alberta which are located approximately 125 km northwest of Grande Prairie.
This report describes the machine’s productivity while processing small deciduous decks and conifer debris piles resulting from the salvage of mountain pine beetle impacted stands.