Sep 4, 2011

Department of Energy 'Billion-Ton' Study Highlighting Opportunities for Growth in Bioenergy Resour

The U.S. Department of Energy today released a report – 2011 U.S. Billion-Ton Update: Biomass Supply for a Bioenergy and Bioproducts Industry – detailing U.S. biomass feedstock potential nationwide. The report examines the nation's capacity to produce a billion dry tons of biomass resources annually for energy uses without impacting other vital U.S. farm and forest products, such as food, feed, and fiber crops. The study provides industry, policymakers, and the agricultural community with county-level data and includes analyses of current U.S. feedstock capacity and the potential for growth in crops and agricultural products for clean energy applications. The biomass resources identified in the report could be used to produce clean, renewable biofuels, biopower, or bioproducts. [The baseline scenario in the newly released report shows that biomass resources could be increased from a current 473 million dry tons annually to nearly 1.1 billion dry tons by 2030, under a conservative set of assumptions about future increases in crop yield.] For example, with continued developments in biorefinery capacity and technology, the feedstock resources identified could produce about 85 billion gallons of biofuels – enough to replace approximately 30% of the nation's current petroleum consumption.  Full story at EERE