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Biomass utilization, forest restoration, and soil productivity associated with bioenergy harvesting and biochar application: Field and laboratory strategies for the U.S. Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station

Posted date: September 30, 2013
Publication Year: 
2011
Publication Series: 
Miscellaneous
Source: Research Strategy White Paper. Flagstaff, AZ: U.S. Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station, Forest and Woodland Ecosystems Science Program. Online: http://www.fs.fed.us/rm/forest-woodland/docs/biochar-biomass-strategic-framework.pdf

Abstract

The removal of forestry residues from public lands is crucial for reducing the risk of stand-replacing wildfires, restoring ecosystems to be more resilient from insect and disease outbreaks, and adapting to climate change. Residues include the tops, limbs, unmerchantable roundwood, and other woody debris that is the byproduct of silvicultural treatments prescribed to achieve these and other management objectives. Using this waste biomass for bioenergy and bioproducts production could improve the economics of silvicultural treatments and produce renewable energy. One bioproduct in particular, the biomass-derived high carbon charcoal know as "biochar", has shown particular promise for offsetting fossil fuels, improving site conditions, and sequestering carbon. However, a variety of ecological, social, and economic impacts must be considered in order to evaluate alternative strategies for the utilization of biomass harvested from public lands.

Citation

Page-Dumroese, Deborah; Anderson, Nathaniel. 2011. Biomass utilization, forest restoration, and soil productivity associated with bioenergy harvesting and biochar application: Field and laboratory strategies for the U.S. Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station. Research Strategy White Paper. Flagstaff, AZ: U.S. Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station, Forest and Woodland Ecosystems Science Program. Online: http://www.fs.fed.us/rm/forest-woodland/docs/biochar-biomass-strategic-framework.pdf