Knock on wood, biomass power is coming
An important part of the province's coal-phaseout strategy rests on Ontario Power Generation's ability to run its existing coal plants on biomass fuel, such as wood pellets produced from forest residue and small, quick-growing trees.
Join the discussion below, or Read more at The Toronto Star.
#1 Feb 5, 2010
Now the Engineers are seeking available fuel. The moss, small shrubs, and other unwanted growth, grind them and compress them into fuel pellets.
#2 Feb 7, 2010
Good news for northern Ontario forestry, bad news for northern Ontario forests. I think that as long as it is done sensibly with other development such as northern mining etc.. than a certain amount of harm reduction can be achieved. Of course starting up tree farms for this purpose is mostly negligible effect. I still don't fully understand why they don't continue burning coal, as a cheap energy source, but to put the cost savings into retrofitting the plants to be 0 emissions systems. I just have this raw image in my mind of strip mined forests akin to clear cutting rather than selective use in places roads or other developments are going anyway. So much for planting trees to replace the old ones if they only live 5 years before they are cut down again. I guess it is a bit like mowing the lawn - where is all that green going.
Hopefully the whole package is taken into consideration on a plethora of Northern Development projects to maximize economic benefit to scale of disruption to the local ecosystems.
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