The Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations tasked FPInnovations with developing a Best Management Practices for Integrated Harvest Operations in British Columbia guidebook (Spencer, 2017), with a focus on biomass extraction principles. One of these principles states that it is beneficial for both primary and secondary harvesters to neatly pile logging residue if it is destined for biomass extraction rather than the traditional practice of piling for burning.
Traditional debris piling practices require the piling of logging residues into a conical or windrow-shaped pile and then clearing the area around the pile of all organics. Little care is taken to exclude contaminants (dirt and rocks) from the pile or to keep the residual pieces intact and aligned as the pile is destined for burning. However, if the burn piles are targeted for secondary use (chips, hog, pellet stock) at a later date, contamination and poor alignment of the pieces can significantly decrease the productivity of the secondary harvester (grinding or chipping) and lead to an inferior end product.