Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Workshop: Mobilizing Sustainable Supply Chains for Forest Biomass for Energy

Workshop Overview

The foundation for mobilizing sustainable bioenergy supply chains must be a competitive business case that is efficient along the whole supply and value chain from the management and harvesting of managed forests to conversion facilities, energy markets and consumers. Sustainability criteria can often be viewed as constraints on the system, but also provide an adaptable framework that provides an opportunity for all actors to engage and contribute to sustainable development and deployment of bioenergy systems that satisfy economic, social and environmental criteria. The major challenges to resolve include:

  • accurate and precise estimates of bioenergy feedstock supply rates from sustainably managed private and public forests that justify long-term investments in conversion facilities to competitively produce electricity, heat and manufactured biofuels and secondary bio-products;
  • assessment of benefits and possible negative impacts of bioenergy supply chains at local, regional and national and global scales, involving life cycle assessment and broader modelling approaches;
  • quantification of the tradeoffs that occur when applying sustainability criteria to bioenergy supply chains; and
  • analysis of impacts of alternative governance models on likely expansion of different bioenergy supply chains, considering market impacts, social impacts; assessment of the viability of different bioenergy supply chains.

This workshop presents an opportunity to study these challenges in the southeastern U.S., a region undergoing significant growth in biomass production for local energy facilities and international export. In this region, mobilizing sustainable biomass supply chains on the scale necessary to meet current and future demand is confounded by the heterogeneous mix of sustainable forest management programs operating at various scales across the region. The coverage of certified forest land in the U.S. South is limited, suggesting that certification systems may not serve as the singular governance strategy to ensure domestic and international consumers that feedstocks are procured from sustainably managed forests. The workshop will discuss the challenges and opportunities to engage the region’s diverse landowners and develop a broad array of effective sustainable forest management programs and practices along supply chains to satisfy sustainability criteria.

The overarching goal of this one-day workshop is to examine the issues involved in mobilization of competitive, sustainable forest bioenergy supply chains from regional to international scales. This will be achieved through five (5) sessions which include presentations by invited bioenergy experts from Europe and North America and interactive panel discussion sessions.

You can dowload the program from HERE

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