October 2016 Newsletter

More than 80 people and 14 exhibitors participated in the 2016 Heating the Midwest (HTM) Conference & Expo held October 11-13, 2016 at the Island Resort & Casino in Harris, Michigan. This year’s theme was “Adopting Renewable Biomass Heat: Investing in Tomorrow’s Sustainable Communities.”During the event, experts and advocates came together to share ideas about biomass for thermal heating (and cooling).

The event kicked off with an informative pre-conference tour of local biomass installations and businesses, followed by a full day-and-a-half of presentations, dialogue, networking and exhibiting. Although smaller than past HTM Conference & Expos, the program content generated thoughtful consideration and delivered valuable information to the attendees. HTM will post the conference presentations soon, as well as related media coverage at  HeatingtheMidwest.org.
Among the diverse group of local, regional and national speakers was Maura Adams of the Northern Forest Center in Concord, New Hampshire. She delivered the keynote on day one of the conference focused on regional impacts of advanced wood heat in New England. She also stressed the importance of creating a reference population for making the case that biomass thermal projects/installations are real as one means for breaking through market barriers. As part of the “Defeating the Biomass Blues” plenary on day two of the conference, Charlie Niebling of Innovative Natural Resource Solutions LLC in Boscawen, New Hampshire, delivered the keynote. It included an invitation to attendees to share what keeps them up at night, and what gives them hope for the future with respect to a sustainable advanced biomass thermal industry.
From topics on media and messaging to seizing opportunities and overcoming barriers, speakers challenged attendees to take a different approach. The full conference program is available here.
As conference champions who were instrumental in bringing the HTM Conference & Expo to Michigan, Raymond Miller (Michigan State University) and Bill Cook (Michigan State University Extension) successfully fulfilled their desire to bring attention to biomass heating in the Upper Peninsula. The conference delivered practical, usable information for attendees and the public who stopped by to take in the vendor expo.
Thank you again to the event sponsors, speakers, co-hosts, supporters and the conference planning committee members. It’s because of you and your steadfast commitment that HTM’s conference continues to thrive and grow its advocacy efforts for the biomass thermal industry!
Becky Philipp
Agricultural Utilization Research Institute and Member of the Heating the Midwest Conference Planning & Steering Committee

On behalf of the HTM Steering & Conference Planning Committees

In this Newsletter:


            bioenergydayNational Bioenergy Day Celebrated Across North America
  • Michigan Biomass / Michigan Conservative Energy Forum / Forest Products Alliance Detroit, Michigan
On the morning of Oct. 21 and into the afternoon, Koda Energy LLC in Shakopee, Minnesota, welcomed members of general public onsite to learn about the facility and its partners. Via a guided tour, attendees gained a first-hand understanding of how the plant operates and its benefits to the surrounding community.http://www.pelletheat.org/pelletwire10232015
  • U.S. Forest Service Chippewa National Forest Ranger StationWalker, Minnesota

REMINDER:  Tell Congress to Pass the BTU Act!
Additional information on how to take action is available at this link: 

Heating the Midwest (HTM) has an interest in promoting the use and adoption of biomass fueled heat and energy systems.  HTM’s Biomass Resource & Demographics Action Team has developed a list of biomass supply resources (full list can be found here) that provides homeowners, businesses, and institutions with help finding leads for potential suppliers of biomass fuel when considering biomass fueled heat and energy system installations and/or for project planning.
Resources included on the list are organized by region or state, and a brief description of the resource’s relevance is provided under the “Comments” column. Attempts were made to capture relevant resources in the Midwestern states. Please contact Becky Philipp at AURI with any errors, and to suggest additions or deletions, atbphilipp@auri.org or 218.280.8575.
A special thank you to the following members of the HTM Biomass Resource & Demographics Subcommittee whose leadership, insight, and contributions were integral in driving this project forward to completion:  David Neumann, Michigan Department of Natural Resources (DNR) (lead); Becky Philipp, Agricultural Utilization Research Institute/AURI (action team co-chair); Alan Doering, AURI (action team co-chair); Sabina Dhungana, Wisconsin DNR/SWET; Mark Lindquist, Minnesota DNR/SWET; Stanley (Jay) Solomon, Jr., University of Illinois Extension; David Fiebelkorn, Heartland Energy Systems; and Fred Iutzi (formerly of the Western Illinois University, Illinois Institute for Rural Affairs).
futuremetricsFutureMetrics White Paper – Global Industrial Wood Pellet Markets – Future Demand and Future Prices
WIWoodWood Heating Could Spark Economic Opportunities In Wisconsin

Funding Opportunities
2017 Wood Innovations Program Request for Proposals: http://www.na.fs.fed.us/werc/wip/2017-rfp.shtm

German American Bioenergy Business Conference
Registration is now open for the German American Bioenergy Business Conference, set for Tuesday, Nov. 1, in Atlanta. The event is free but requires an RSVP. The conference, which will run from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., will also showcase bioenergy best practice examples in both countries, highlight local projects, provide a platform to foster the exchange of ideas, discuss challenges and possible solutions. In addition, several German companies in the field of bioenergy are attending to establish business relationships.
boilerworkshopWoody Biomass Boiler Workshop
Please consider joining Virginia Cooperative Extension and its partners for a Woody Biomass Boiler Workshop.  This educational workshop is scheduled for Wednesday, November 2, 2016 in Galax, VA.  Please see below, or visit this LINK , for additional information.  This educational event is offered as a collaboration between the Virginia Community Wood Energy Program and the Agricultural Energy Efficiency Initiative, more details on these programs are also included below.  The Virginia Community Wood Energy Program is receiving registrations for this event through the Center for Natural Capital.

Registration is Still Open for BTEC’s 10-Week Hydronic-Based Biomass Heating Systems Course
Registration is still open for BTEC’s comprehensive  ten-week online course, Hydronic-Based Biomass Heating Systems. This course is taught by industry expert John Siegenthaler, and is designed for engineers, installers, designers, and professionals looking to take their skills to the next level. Developed as a partnership between the Biomass Thermal Energy Council (BTEC) and HeatSpring, this is a unique opportunity learn directly from an industry expert and earn 23 AIA credits and 11.5 BPI CEUs. Once you take the course, all lecture videos and other materials are available to you for a full year online.

BTEC’s 8-Week Hydronic-Based Biomass Heating Systems – Light Version (Online)
New biomass training from BTEC and John Siegenthaler. This technically-focused course is for heating professionals who want to design and install state-of-the-art heating systems supplied by high-efficiency / low-emission biomass-fueled boilers. It focuses on residential and light commercial system applications.
intlInternational Training Seminar
Biomass Heating-Market development and technologies
Free Publications
Biomass Magazine and Pellet Mill Magazine are free to subscribers in the USA.  Here’s link to sign up and there is also free e-newsletters, free webinars and more:

BTEC Newsletter:  If you are interested in receiving the Biomass Thermal Energy Council’s weekly biomass newsletter and other news releases, you are encouraged to sign-up athttp://biomassthermal.org/mailingForm.asp


Have Biomass Project Ideas for SWET?
Michigan Statewide Wood Energy Team
Contact: Ray Miller – rmiller@anr.msu.edu
Minnesota Statewide Wood Energy Team
Contact: Mark Lindquist – mark.lindquist@state.mn.us
Wisconsin Statewide Wood Energy Team

Call for Your Midwest Biomass Stories and Events for November Newsletter
As you’ve seen month after month; companies, governments, and communities around the Midwest are making progress on biomass heating and combined heat and power (CHP) programs and projects. If you have a story or event to contribute for next month, please submit by close of business the 3rd Wednesday of the month to  aharguth@auri.org.  And, if you’d like to be on the list to receive upcoming newsletters, please contact Ashley Harguth at aharguth@auri.org.
Heating the Midwest-Become an Action Team Volunteer!
If you have a specific area of interest related to biomass thermal, we welcome your participation in one or all of HTM’s three action teams-Biomass Combustion Technologies, Policy & Benefits, and Biomass Resources & Demographics. Is your time often stretched? No problem. Time committed to the HTM effort is volunteer time. The teams meet monthly via conference call, and calls are limited to one hour in respect of members’ time and busy schedules. Members may choose to volunteer more of their time individually to support Action Team specific projects as they arise.  The work of each of the action teams involves developing “boots on the ground” projects for spurring action, discussing industry challenges in each sector and how to possibly address, networking and supporting the overall goals and vision of the Heating the Midwest with Renewable Biomass initiative in an effort to grow demand and expand marketing opportunities in the biomass thermal sector, and create awareness of biomass thermal. Following is a list of the schedule for the action team calls:
Biomass Combustion Technologies Action Team
Meets first Tuesday of each month at 9:00 a.m. CST
Biomass Policy & Benefits Action Team
Meets second Tuesday of each month at 9:00 a.m. CST
Biomass Resources & Demographics Action Team
Meets third Monday of each month at 10:00 a.m. CST
For more detailed information on the Biomass Combustion Technologies or Policy & Benefits Action Teams, please contact Nan Larson at nlarson@auri.org or via phone at: (507) 537-6020. And for details pertaining to the Biomass Resources & Demographics Action Team, please contact Becky Philipp at bphilipp@auri.org or via phone at (218) 280-8575.