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Pinchot focus areas:

Climate & Energy
2009 Bioenergy Outlook Forum Summary
2009 Outlook Forum: Implications for Federal and State Policies
As the nation faces significant energy and climate change challenges, bioenergy from the nation's forests has the potential to play an important role. Expansion of the scale and nature of forest bioenergy activities has the potential to significantly alter the existing relations between users and suppliers of wood, the nature of forest practices, and the ability of forests to produce ecosystem goods and services other than fiber and energy.

With a goal of identifying federal and state polices that can address key sustainability concerns in the expansion of wood bioenergy capacity in the United States, the Pinchot Institute and the H. John Heinz III Center conducted an outlook forum with representatives from the energy and forest products sectors, the small and large landowner communities, state and federal agencies responsible for energy policy and forest management, nongovernmental environmental organizations, and other experts. Focus was centered on policy orientation, US forests, bioenergy types, and sustainability. As this is the first in many sessions focusing on this topic, and the Pinchot Institute and the Heinz Center will continue this national dialogue through research, policy analysis, and future dialogue sessions.

Session Summary: Ensuring Forest Sustainability in the Development of Wood Biofuels and Bionergy: Implications for Federal and State Policies [Download .pdf]

Panels and Presentations:
Introduction. Ensuring Forest Sustainability in the Development of Wood Bioenergy: National Policy Forum. Al Sample, Pinchot Institute. [Download .pdf]

Forum purpose and goals: Indentify common goals and objectives for environmentally sustainable development of a wood biofuels/bioenergy industry in the US, and design a framework of federal and state policies that support and align with those goals.

Panel 1: Biomass availability and alternative bioenergy technologies. How is the available, sustainable woody biomass supply determined, and what is the effect of different wood biofuels/bioenergy technologies on regional wood demand?

Discussants: Panel 2: Environmental, economic, and community efforts. How can planning ahead maximize gains and minimize impacts for forest, communities, and local industries?

Panel 3: Getting the signals right. How should the existing framework of renewable energy goals and incentives evolve to better facilitate the development of a sustainable wood bioenergy industry?

  • Jerry Schwartz, American Forest & Paper Association [Download .pdf]
  • Charles Niebling, New England Wood Pellet [Download .pdf]
  • Ben Larson, Union for Concerned Scientists
Facilitated Discussion: Current and potential policy proposals: areas of agreement and shared goals.

  • Jesse Caputo, Environment and Energy Study Institute [Download .pdf]
Speaker Bios: Download .pdf

List of Participants: Download .pdf

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