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Tuesday, 2nd August 2011

Near-Term Opportunities for Integrating Biomass into the U.S. Electricity Supply

Source: RAND Corporation

From the press release:

In light of potential regulatory limits on greenhouse-gas (GHG) emissions, requirements for greater use of renewable fuels, and higher prices for some conventional fossil resources, over the course of the next few decades, biomass is expected to become an increasingly important source of electricity, heat, and liquid fuel. One near-term option for using biomass to generate electricity is to cofire biomass in coal-fired electricity plants. Doing so allows such plants to reduce GHG emissions and, in appropriate regulatory environments, to generate renewable-energy credits to recover costs. This report focuses on two aspects of biomass use: plant-site modifications, changes in operations, and costs associated with cofiring biomass; and the logistical issues associated with delivering biomass to the plant. The authors find that the main challenge is maintaining a consistent fuel supply; technical and regulatory factors can drive the decision to cofire; cofiring can increase costs, decrease revenue, and reduce GHG emissions; densification does not reduce plant costs but can reduce transportation costs, however current markets cannot support use of densified fuels.


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An Info Pro, librarian, entrepreneur, author, worldwide connector and book-lover, Heather Negley is recognized for her new ways of thinking about librarianship, research, social media and creativity. Heather is the founder of HelpALibrarian.com and Zing Information Services. She has most recently been an Information Research Specialist with the Congressional Research Service at the Library of Congress where she provided business research for members of Congress and their staffs. Heather also worked as a research reporter for U.S. News and World Report and as a technical advertising producer on the washingtonpost.com. She received her MS in Library and Information Science from Simmons College in Boston, MA.

Heather can be reached at heather.negley@freepint.com

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