Here’s an article on biomass at U of M- “University of Montana officials hope to shrink the carbon footprint of campus by nearly a quarter by building a $16 million, wood-fired, biomass boiler onto the existing heating plant.”
Julie Kies coordinates the Fuels for Schools and Beyond program with the Montana Department of Natural Resources and Conservation. She said the biomass plant proposal represents proven technology, as forest-products mills have used similar technology to heat their facilities for decades. In addition, 10 Montana public schools already use similar technology, as does UM-Western in Dillon and the University of Idaho in Moscow.
“What sets the UM plan apart is its scale, though it still won’t be as large as the co-generation facilities used by mills,” Kies said. “But it would be the largest such plant used at a Montana educational facility.”
Duringer said the University of South Carolina completed a similar project with mixed results that UM has learned from. Other campuses now introducing biomass plants include the University of British Columbia in Vancouver and Evergreen State College in Olympia, Wash.
In addition to the University of Montana, the DNRC awarded grants to two other area projects. Mineral Community Hospital in Superior received $175,000 for its biomass energy facility that will serve the hospital, elementary school, and high school. Clark Fork Valley Hospital in Plains received $104,000 for its wood pellet-based biomass energy system.
Here is another piece:
Julie Kies, DNRC Biomass Program Manager, sees the expansion of biomass utilization in Montana as a positive for both local economies and the state’s forest industry. The Montana Fuels for Schools and Beyond Program has helped to fund and implement 10 other biomass energy projects in Montana, starting with the pilot project at Darby School in 2003. We’re pleased to see woody biomass energy expanding to other facilities in the state including hospitals and university campuses, she said. Information about DNRC’s Biomass Utilization Program can be found online at http://dnrc.mt.gov/forestry/assistance/biomass