Biomass Power Plant Feedstocks Graphical Information


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Figure 1. Biopower Conversion Processes. Source: Peter McKendry, “Energy Production from Biomass (Part 2): Conversion Technologies,” Bioresource Technology, vol. 83 (2002), pp. 47-54. Adapted by CRS.
Figure 1. Biopower Conversion Processes. Source: Peter McKendry, “Energy Production from Biomass (Part 2): Conversion Technologies,” Bioresource Technology, vol. 83 (2002), pp. 47-54. Adapted by CRS.

Figure 2. Biopower and Biofuel Technology Pipeline. Source: Electric Power Research Institute, Biopower Generation: Biomass Issues, Fuels, Technologies, and Research, Development, Demonstration, and Deployment Opportunities, February 2010.
Figure 2. Biopower and Biofuel Technology Pipeline. Source: Electric Power Research Institute, Biopower Generation: Biomass Issues, Fuels, Technologies, and Research, Development, Demonstration, and Deployment Opportunities, February 2010.

Source: Department of Energy, Relationship Between Power Plant Efficiency and Capacity and Tons Biomass Required and Acres Required, Lynn Wright, http://bioenergy.ornl.gov/resourcedata/powerandwood.html.
Source: Department of Energy, Relationship Between Power Plant Efficiency and Capacity and Tons Biomass Required and Acres Required, Lynn Wright, http://bioenergy.ornl.gov/resourcedata/powerandwood.html.

Figure 3. Carbon Balance of Energy. Source: John A. Matthews, “Carbon-Negative Biofuels,” Energy Policy, vol. 36 (2008), pp. 940-945; Biopact, “The Strange World of Carbon-Negative Bioenergy: The More You Drive Your Car, the More You Tackle Climate Change,” 2007, http://news.mongabay.com/bioenergy/2007/10/strange-world-of-carbon-negative.html. Adapted by CRS.
Figure 3. Carbon Balance of Energy. Source: John A. Matthews, “Carbon-Negative Biofuels,” Energy Policy, vol. 36 (2008), pp. 940-945; Biopact, “The Strange World of Carbon-Negative Bioenergy: The More You Drive Your Car, the More You Tackle Climate Change,” 2007, http://news.mongabay.com/bioenergy/2007/10/strange-world-of-carbon-negative.html. Adapted by CRS.

Biomass Feedstock Characteristics for Biopower Generation

Feedstock TypeEnergy Value Btu/lb (dry), Feedstock Yield, Selected Advantages, Selected Disadvantages, Comments

Woody Biomass     Willow (example of a wood crop grown as a bush type or “coppice” crop in high density plantings as dedicated bioenergy crop)7,983-8,4974-8 dry tons/acre/year harvested on 2-4 year cycle

  • High yield potential
  • Grown for several cycles before replanting
  • Select varieties easily replicated by cloning
  • Easy to automate planting and harvest as a row crop
  • Short harvest cycle for wood
  • Farmers can grow and harvest
  • Low ash content
  • Requires specialized harvesting equipment
  • High density plantings are costly to establish
  • U.S. experience and varieties of willow currently limited to Northeast
  • Must be harvested in winter to obtain regrowth for several cycles
  • Agricultural site preparation needed for successful establishment
  • Susceptibility of some willow varieties to insects and diseases may require occasional chemical applications
  • Very high future yield potential with genetic selection
  • Innovative harvest equipment  is available
  • Many woody hardwood crops can be grown as bush type crops
  • Economic yields obtained on marginal to good cropland
  • Less fertilization required than agricultural crops

Hybrid poplar (example of a fast growing hardwood grown as a row crop for bioenergy or multiple purposes)8,183-8,4913-7 dry tons/acre/year; harvested on 5-15 year cycles

  • High yield potential
  • Select varieties easily replicated by cloning
  • Easy to automate planting and harvest as a row crop
  • Can be stored on stump until needed
  • Relatively low-maintenance crop
  • Improvements for bioenergy will also likely benefit the pulp and paper industry
  • No immediate return on investment
  • Susceptibility of some hybrid poplar varieties to insects and diseases may require occasional chemical applications
  • Agriculture-type site preparation needed for successful establishment
  • Regrowth after harvest is possible but replanting with superior clones is recommend
  • Very high future yield potential with genetic selection
  • Innovative harvest equipment is under development
  • Economic yields obtained on marginal to good cropland

Loblolly pine (example of fast-growing softwood grown as a row crop for bioenergy or multiple purposes ) 8,000-9,120 3-7 dry tons/acre/year; harvested every 20-40 years

  • 30 million acres of southern pines already are being managed in southern U.S.
  • Somewhat higher energy value than poplars and willows
  • Grows better than poplars and other hardwoods on marginal coastal plains and flatwoods soils
  • Valuable to landowners as a low-intensity crop with multiple markets
  • Pines cannot currently be cloned; standard breeding and family selection techniques must be used to improve yield
  • Pines are mostly hand planted, since planted as rooted seedlings; Limited automation is possible
  • Agricultural type site preparation needed for rapid early growth
  •  Well suited for thermal technologies to generate electricity and ethanol
  • Conversion to liquid fuels is possible with acid hydrolysis and as a co-product of pulp fiber production
  • Less fertilization required than for agricultural crops

Pine chips (example of forest residues from timber and fiber harvests) 8,000-9,120 10-20 dry tons/acre of on-site residues following logging; harvested every 20-40 years

  • Relatively inexpensive if chips produced at the roadside as a byproduct of wood processing
  • Infrastructure to handle forest residues exists
  • High retrieval cost when tops and branches collected in forest due to labor-intensive collection and transportation
  • Tops and branches may not be accessible or environmentally sustainable to remove for chipping, depending on location and soil type
  •  An expanded ethanol industry using wood can also be an additional source of biopower as a co-product

Mill residue (from both sawmills and pulp mills) 7,000-10,000 Highly variable depending on operating size of the mill

  • Easily available and accessible
  • Inexpensive
  • Infrastructure to handle feedstock exists
  •  Nearly all mill residues are currently being used in wood products such as particleboard and paper, as fuel for heat or biopower, or to make mulch
  •  Most mill residues will continue to be used at or near the site where wood is processed though at higher energy costs, more might shift to on-site bioenergy production

Herbaceous Biomass      Miscanthus (highly productive grass in Europe) 7,781-8,417 4-7 dry tons/acre/year current U.S. average 4-12 dry tons/acre/year has been observed for delayed harvest yields in Europe

  • Once established, can be harvested annually for 15-20 years before having to replant
  • Low fertilizer requirements
  • Drought-tolerant
  • Very high yield potential with adequate water
  • Long growth season in mid-U.S.
  • Giant miscanthus is sterile, thus not invasive
  • No immediate harvest; takes one to three years to be established
  • Not a native species
  • Testing as a bioenergy feedstock limited to the last 10 years (most research conducted in Europe)
  • Thick-stem and moisture content of 30 to 50% in late fall requires specialized harvesting equipment
  • Planting of rhizomes requires specialized equipment
  • Perennial grass
  • Established vegetatively by planting divided rhizome pieces
  • Higher yields are likely to occur on well-drained soils suitable for annual row crops
  • Suitable for thermochemical conversion processes, such as combustion, if harvest is delayed until late winter

Switchgrass (example of several possible perennial warm-season grasses) 7,754-8,233 4-9 dry tons/acre/year range in research trials

  • Suitable for growth on marginal land
  • Relatively high, reliable productivity across a wide geographical range
  • Low water and nutrient requirements
  • Provides wildlife cover and erosion control
  • Can be grown and harvested with existing farm equipment
  • Planted by seeding
  • Low moisture content if harvested in late fall (15% to 20%)
  • Few major insect or disease pests
  • No immediate harvest; takes two to three years to be established
  • May require annual fertilization to optimize yields, but at relatively low levels
  • Annual harvest must occur over a relatively short window of time each fall
  • Year-round storage is needed if switchgrass is only feedstock for a bioenergy facility
  • Energy content diminishes over year if not kept dry
  • Ash content can be high
  • Native perennial grass
  • Can be used for gasification, combustion or pyrolysis technologies to generate electricity or for biochemical conversion to ethanol
  • Research for bioenergy feedstock began in the 1980s

Sorghum—varieties selected for biomass production (similar to a tall thin stalked forage sorghum crop) 7,476-8,184 4-10 dry tons/acre/year Higher yields observed

  • Suitable for warm and dry growing regions
  • Seed production delayed, thus produces more biomass
  • Annual crop, thus immediate return on investment
  • Grows across most of eastern and central U.S., not frost limited
  • Yields more variable than switchgrass, with rainfall differences
  • Requires > 20 inches of rainfall annually
  • Annual crop, thus more expense and work to replant each year
  • Sweet, grain, and silage sorghums are more suitable for ethanol production with higher sugar content
  • Susceptibility to anthracnose disease of some genotypes

Sugarcane/Energycane 7,450-8,349 Yields exceeding 10 dry tons/acre common

  • Takes approximately one year to become established
  • Has very high yield potential in tropical, semitropical and subtropical regions of world
  • A multi-purpose crop-producing sugar (or ethanol) and biopower feedstock
  • Drought-adapted
  • Planting locations limited to a few states in the South and Hawaii
  • Must be replanted every 4 to 5 years
  • Planting is vegetative (stalks are laid down) rather than by seed
  • Vulnerable to bacterial, fungal, viral, and insect pests
  • Crop must be harvested green and dewatered or stored like silage
  •  Literature mostly centers on its use for ethanol
  • The bagasse (residue once juice is extracted from the sugarcane) may be used for biopower e.g., frequently used in Brazil
  • Research ongoing to hybridize to achieve cold tolerance

Aquatic Biomass      Algae 8,000-10,000 for algal mass; 16,000 for algal oil and lipids Estimates not available for biopower

  •  Cultivation strategies can minimize or avoid competition with arable land and nutrients used for conventional agriculture
  • Can use waste water, produced water, and saline water, reducing competition for limited freshwater supplies
  • Can recycle carbon from CO2-rich flue emissions from stationary sources including power plants and other industrial emitters
  • Relatively little R&D investment regarding feedstock, biopower conversion, and infrastructure
  •  Considered a third-generation bioenergy source
  • Mainly considered for biofuel purposes; however, some scientists are studying its biopower potential, both directly or via methane productiond

Agricultural Biomass and Animal Wastes      Corn stover 7,587-7,967 Stover amounts could range from 3-4.5 dry tons/acre/year in fields producing 100-150 bushels of grain/acre

  • Cultivation techniques are established
  • Using a resource that has previously gone unused
  • Stover conversion process could be added to grain-toethanol facilities
  • Harvesting and transportation infrastructure not yet established
  • Excessive removal may lead to soil erosion and nutrient runoff
  • Requires high level of nutrients and fertile soils
  • Corn grain and stover use has reinvigorated the food-fuel debate
  • Can be used for gasification, combustion, or pyrolysis technologies for electricity or biochemical processes for biofuels

Wheat straw 6,964-8,148 2.6 tons dry tons/acre

  • Cultivation techniques are established
  • Using a resource that has previously gone unused
  • Harvesting and transportation infrastructure not yet established
  • Excessive removal may lead to soil erosion and nutrient runoff
  • Can be used for gasification, combustion or pyrolysis technologies to generate electricity or biochemical processes to biofuels

Sugarcane bagasse (residue once juice is extracted from the sugar cane; see above for sugarcane 7,450-8,349 14%-30% of total sugarcane yield

  • Sugarcane takes approximately one year to become established
  • Bagasse is collected as part of the main crop
  • Bagasse availability limited to a few states in the South and Hawaii
  • Ash content can be high
  • Literature mostly centers on its use for ethanol
  • The bagasse is used to power sugarcane mills in many parts of the world.

Cattle manure 8,500 Based on manure excretion rate of cow

  • Using a resource that is generally regarded as a waste product with little to no value
  • Using a resource that has undesirable environmental impacts if improperly managed
  • Collection systems established for dairy manure
  • Water and air quality improvement
  • Technology to convert manure to electricity is expensive
  • Difficult for some agricultural producers to sell power to utilities due to economics and utility company collaboration
  • Well suited for anaerobic digestion to generate electricity

Industrial Biomass      Municipal solid waste (MSW) 5,100 (on an as arrived basis) 1,643 lbs/person/year

  • A resource available in abundant supply
  • Diverts MSW from landfill disposal
  • Well commercialized technology (wasteto- energy plants)
  • Could serve as a disincentive to separate and recycle certain waste
  • Air emissions are strictly regulated to control the release of toxic materials often in MSW; toxins removed from air emissions will be transferred to waste ash, which may require disposal as hazardous waste
  • Costs are substantially higher than landfill in most areas
  • Not considered by some as a renewable energy feedstock because some of the waste materials are made using fossil fuels
  • Well suited for combustion (waste to energy plants), gasification, pyrolysis, or anaerobic digestion technologies to generate electricity

Fossil Fuels     Coal (low rank; lignite/sub-bituminous)6,437-8,154Not applicable

  • Established infrastructure
  • Reliable
  • Relatively inexpensive
  • Limited resource
  • Major source of mercury, SO2, and NOx emissions
  • Main source of U.S. greenhouse gas emissions
  • Generates a tremendous amount of waste ash that likely contains a host of hazardous constituents

Coal (high rank; bituminous)11,587-12,875Not applicable

  • Established infrastructure
  • Reliable
  • Relatively inexpensive
  • Limited resource
  • Major source of mercury, SO2, and NOx emissions
  • Main source of U.S. greenhouse gas emissions
  • Generates a tremendous amount of waste ash that likely contains a host of hazardous constituents

Oil (typical distillate)18,025-19,313Not applicable

  • Established infrastructure • Reliable
  • Limited resource
  • Major source of SO2 and NOx emissions
  • Purchased in large quantities from foreign sources

Source: Compiled from various sources by CRS and Lynn Wright, biomass consultant working with Oak Ridge National Laboratory.

Notes: The information provided in this table are estimates for general use. Multiple factors including location, economics, and technical parameters will influence the data on a case-by-case basis. Lynn Wright, biomass consultant working with Oak Ridge National Laboratory, provided the following comments: The infrastructure to handle woody resources (both forest residues and plantation grown wood) already exists in the pulp and paper industry and can be easily used for the bioenergy industry. Most woody biomass resources (whether forest residues or plantation grown wood) will be delivered as chips similar to current pulp and paper industry practices. However, new equipment and harvest techniques may allow delivery as bundles or whole trees in some situations. Wood resources such as chipped pine (softwoods) and hardwoods and urban wood residues are already being used to generate electricity using direct combustion technologies, all woody feedstocks are well suited for all thermal conversion technologies including combustion, gasification and pryolysis to generate electricity. Biopower can also be produced from the black liquor by-product of both pulp and ethanol production. Clean wood chips from willow, hybrid poplar, and other hardwoods are also very suitable for conversion to liquid fuels using biochemical conversion technologies.

a. Energy values for the following feedstocks were obtained from Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Biomass Energy Data Book: Edition 2, ORNL/Tm-2009/098, December 2009, http://cta.ornl.gov/bedb/pdf/BEDB2_Full_Doc.pdf; Table A.2 “Heat Content Ranges for Various Biomass Fuels”; willow, hybrid poplar, pine = Forest Residues – softwoods, switchgrass, miscanthus (converted from kj/kg to Btu/lb) corn stover, sugarcane bagasse and wheat straw. Energy values for fossil fuels were obtained by converting the heating values (GJ/t) provided in Jonathan Scurlock, Bioenergy Feedstock Characteristics, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, 2002, http://bioenergy.ornl.gov/ papers/misc/biochar_factsheet.html to an energy value (Btu/lb). The energy value for sawmill residue was obtained from Nathan McClure, Georgia Forestry Commission, “Forest Biomass as a Feedstock for Energy Production,” oral presentation for Georgia Bioenergy Conference, August 2, 2006, http://www.gabioenergy.org/ppt/McClure—Forest%20Biomass%20as%20a%20Feedstock%20for%20Energy%20Production.pdf. The energy value for algae was obtained from Oilgae, “Answers to some Algae Oil FAQs—Heating Value, Yield …,” February 2007, http://www.oilgae.com/blog/2007/02/answers-to-some-algae-oil-faqsheating. html. The energy value of manure on a dry ash-free basis was obtained from Texas Cooperative Extension, Manure to Energy: Understanding Processes, Principles and Jargon, E-428, 2006, http://tammi.tamu.edu/ManurtoEnrgyE428.pdf. The manure heating value may be reduced by the ash and moisture content of the manure given certain conditions. The energy value of municipal solid waste was obtained from C. Valkenburg, C.W. Walton, and B.L. Thompson, et al., Municipal Solid Waste (MSW) to Liquid Fuels Synthesis, Volume 1: Availability of Feedstock and Technology, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, PNNL-18144, December 2008, http://www.pnl.gov/ main/publications/external/technical_reports/PNNL-18144.pdf. The energy value for sorghum was obtained using a value for sudan grass, a closely related crop, from the European PHYLLIS database http://www.ecn.nl/phyllis/dataTable.asp.

b. The harvest frequency is on an annual basis unless stated otherwise. Energy yield ranges for willows, poplars, pines, switchgrass, miscanthus, sugarcane, sugarcane bagasse and sorghum were provided by Lynn Wright, biomass consultant working with Oak Ridge National Laboratory. Energy yields for miscanthus. and switchgrass were also discussed with Jeffrey Steiner (USDA), August 2010. Energy yields for hybrid poplar were also obtained from Minnesota Department of Agriculture, Minnesota Energy from Biomass, http://www.mda.state.mn.us/renewable/renewablefuels/biomass.aspx; Energy yield for pine chips (forest residues) was obtained from calculations from data in David A. Hartman et al., Conversion Factors for the Pacific Northwest Forest Industry (Seattle, WA; Univ. of Washington, Institute of Forest Products, no date), pp. 6, 47. Energy yield for corn stover was obtained from R.L Nielsen, Questions Relative to Harvesting & Storing Corn Stover, Purdue University, AGRY-95-09, September 1995, http://www.agry.purdue.edu/ext/corn/pubs/agry9509.htm. Energy yield for wheat straw was obtained from Jim Morrison, Emerson Nafziger, and Lyle Paul, Predicting Wheat Straw Yields in Northern Illinois, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 2007, http://cropsci.illinois.edu/research/rdc/dekalb/ publications/2007/PredictingWheatStrawYieldsFinalReportToExtensionMay2007.pdf; In general, it is assumed a dairy cow excretes 150lbs of manure/day based on the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers (ASABE) Manure Production and Characteristics Standard D384.2, March 2005. Energy yield for municipal solid waste was calculated based on data from U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Office of Solid Waste http://www.epa.gov/osw/basic-solid.htm (In 2008, U.S. residents, businesses, and institutions produced about 250 million tons of MSW, which is approximately 4.5 pounds of waste per person per day). Energy yield for miscanthus in Europe was obtained from Clifton-Brown, J.C., Stampfl, P.A., and Jones, M.B., Miscanthus Biomass Production for Energy in Europe and Its Potential Contribution to Decreasing Fossil Fuel Carbon Emissions. Global Change Biology, 10, (2004) pp. 509-518; Energy yield for siwtchgrass was obtained from McLaughlin, S.B., and Kszos, L.A., “Development of Switchgrass (panicum virgatum) as a bioenergy feedstock in the United States.” Biomass and Bioenergy 28 (2005) pp. 515-535. Energy yield for sorghum was obtained from W.L. Rooney, et al, “Designing Sorghum as a Dedicated Bioenergy Feedstock.” Biofuels, Bioproducts, and Biorefining. 1, (2007) pp.147-157; Energy yield for sugarcane/energycane obtained from http://www.ars.usda.gov/research/publications/publications.htm?seq_no_115=251543&pf=1 (a web-published abstract of a book chapter written by Bransby et. al. and submitted for publication in February 2010); Energy yield for sugarcane baggase was obtained from http://www.ars.usda.gov/research/publications/publications.htm?seq_no_115=254594&pf=1 (an abstract of a book chapter prepared by R. Viator, P. White, and E. Richard, and entitled “ Sustainable Production of Energycane for Bio-energy in the Southeastern U.S.” submitted for publication by the Sugarcane Research Unit in Houma, LA in August 2010).

c. For more information on the state of combustion, pyrolysis, gasification, and anaerobic digestion technologies, see the shaded text box on page 5.

d. For more information, see Stanford University, “Stanford Researchers Find Electrical Current Stemming from Plants,” press release, April 13, 2010, http://news.stanford.edu/news/2010/april/electric-current-plants-041310.html; and John Ferrell and Valerie Sarisky-Reed, National Algal Biofuels Technology Roadmap, U.S. Department of Energy Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Office of the Biomass Program, May 2010, http://www1.eere.energy.gov/biomass/pdfs/ algal_biofuels_roadmap.pdf.

References

  1. The Renewable Fuel Standard, a mandate to ensure that domestic transportation fuel contains a specified volume of biofuels, is one reason most legislative and administrative efforts have focused on development of biofuels for transportation. For more information, see CRS Report R40155, Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS): Overview and Issues, by Randy Schnepf and Brent D. Yacobucci.
  2. U.S. Energy Information Administration, Annual Energy Review 2009, DOE/EIA-0384(2009), August 2010.
  3. U.S. Energy Information Administration, Renewable Energy Annual 2008 Edition, August 2010. Biopower constituted roughly 14.4% of electricity generation from renewable energy sources in 2008, preceded by conventional hydroelectric power and wind, which constituted roughly 67% and 14.5%, respectively.
  4. U.S. Energy Information Administration, Annual Energy Outlook 2010, DOE/EIA-0383(2010), Washington, DC, April 2010. The bulk of this increase is expected to come from growth in co-firing operations. Co-firing is the combustion of a supplementary fuel (e.g., biomass) and coal concurrently.
  5. Pew Center on Global Climate Change , Biopower, December 2009. Certain analysis indicates that feedstock supply should be located within a 50- mile radius to avoid excessive transportation costs: Marie E. Walsh, Robert L. Perlack, and Anthony Turhollow et al., Biomass Feedstock Availability in the United States: 1999 State Level Analysis, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, January 2000.
  6. Executive Order 13514 defines sustainability as the creation and maintenance of conditions that allow humans and animals to exist in productive harmony, and that permit fulfilling the social, economic, and other requirements of present and future generations. For more information, see CRS Report R40974, Executive Order 13514: Sustainability and Greenhouse Gas Emissions Reduction , by Richard J. Campbell and Anthony Andrews.
  7. For more information on biomass definitions, see CRS Report R40529, Biomass: Comparison of Definitions in Legislation Through the 111th Congress, by Kelsi Bracmort and Ross W. Gorte.
  8. Some of this information may be provided in a forthcoming update to the frequently cited DOE/USDA Billion-Ton Study, Biomass as Feedstock for a Bioenergy and Bioproducts Industry: The Technical Feasibility of a Billion-Ton Annual Supply, April 2005.
  9. In September 2010 the National Renewable Energy Laboratory released a comprehensive mapping application that may provide better data to compare biomass feedstock and biopower by location. National Renewable Energy Laboratory, “NREL Releases BioEnergy Atlas—A Comprehensive Biomass Mapping Application,” press release, September 28, 2010.
  10. CRS calculations based on 2008 total U.S. retail electricity sales. Power plant capacity factor was assumed to be 80% with 988 growing acres required per megawatt. The yield, six dry tons/acre, is similar to what may be achieved by switchgrass. Land in farms data for Iowa obtained from the 2007 Census of Agriculture.
  11. Peter McKendry, “Energy Production from Biomass (Part 1): Overview of Biomass,” Bioresource Technology, vol. 83 (2002), pp. 37-46.
  12. Peter McKendry, “Energy Production from Biomass (Part 1): Overview of Biomass,” Bioresource Technology, vol. 83 (2002), pp. 37-46.
  13. Section 201 of the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 (EISA; P.L. 110-140) defines lifecycle emissions as follows: “(H) LIFECYCLE GREENHOUSE GAS EMISSIONS.—The term ‘lifecycle greenhouse gas emissions’ means the aggregate quantity of greenhouse gas emissions (including direct emissions and significant indirect emissions such as significant emissions from land use changes), as determined by the Administrator, related to the full fuel lifecycle, including all stages of fuel and feedstock production and distribution, from feedstock generation or extraction through the distribution and delivery and use of the finished fuel to the ultimate consumer, where the mass values for all greenhouse gases are adjusted to account for their relative global warming potential.” 42 U.S.C. §7545(o)(1). For more information on lifecycle emissions, see CRS Report R40460, Calculation of Lifecycle Greenhouse Gas Emissions for the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS), by Brent D. Yacobucci and Kelsi Bracmort.
  14. For more information on carbon neutrality of biomass energy, see CRS Report R41603, Is Biopower Carbon Neutral?, by Kelsi Bracmort.
  15. The rule sets thresholds for GHG emissions that define when permits are required for new and existing industrial facilities. For more information on the history of the Tailoring Rule, see CRS Report R41103, Federal Agency Actions Following the Supreme Court’s Climate Change Decision: A Chronology, by Robert Meltz..
  16. EPA’s decision on biomass combustion and biogenic activities is described in further detail on pages 419-422 of the final rule. For more information on the final rule, see CRS Report R41212, EPA Regulation of Greenhouse Gases: Congressional Responses and Options, by James E. McCarthy and Larry Parker.
  17. Environmental Protection Agency, “EPA to Defer GHG Permitting Requirements for Industries that Use Biomass/Three-year deferral allows for further examination of scientific and technical issues associated with counting these emissions,” press release, January 12, 2011. Biogenic includes facilities that emit CO2 from sources originating via a biological processes, such as landfills.
  18. BACT is an emissions limitation that is based on the maximum degree of control that can be achieved. It is a caseby- case decision that considers energy, environmental, and economic impact. BACT can be add-on control equipment or modification of the production processes or methods. BACT may be a design, equipment, work practice, or operational standard if imposition of an emissions standard is infeasible. Environmental Protection Agency, PSD and Title V Permitting Guidance For Greenhouse Gases, November 2010.
  19. Environmental Protection Agency, PSD and Title V Permitting Guidance For Greenhouse Gases, November 2010.
  20. 26 U.S.C. § 45.
  21. 26 U.S.C. § 48.
  22. U.S. Department of the Treasury, Payments for Specified Energy Property in Lieu of Tax Credits under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, January 2011.
  23. For more information on BCAP, see CRS Report R41296, Biomass Crop Assistance Program (BCAP): Status and Issues, by Megan Stubbs. BCAP provides financial assistance to producers or entities that deliver eligible biomass material to designated biomass conversion facilities for use as heat, power, biobased products, or biofuels.
  24. For more information on the proposed RES in S. 1462, see CRS Report R40837, Summary and Analysis of S. 1462: American Clean Energy Leadership Act of 2009, As Reported, coordinated by Mark Holt and Gene Whitney.
  25. For more information, see CRS Report R40890, Summary and Analysis of S. 1733 and Comparison with H.R. 2454: Electric Power and Natural Gas, by Stan Mark Kaplan.
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