SOUTHERN UTAH WOODY BIOMASS FIELD DAYS Mark Nelson Utah State University USU Extension Agent, Beaver County, Box 466, Beaver UT 84713 Abstract ObjectivesCurrently there are nearly 50 million acres of Pinyon/Juniper woodlands across the West and • Bring attention to the problems that the Pinyon/Junipermore acres are being invaded each year. The risks presented by expanding and overstocked invasion are causing in Utah and other western states.Pinyon/Juniper woodlands and the associated impacts on ecosystem biodiversity, wildlife • Demonstrate what woody biomass harvesting is all abouthabitat, and water quantity and quality are cause for major concern. Recently the BLM and and the state of the art equipment that is availableForest Service are renewing its efforts to control this problem. Proactive management canprovide positive use of (PJ) fuels while reducing fire suppression and restoration costs. In • Find new markets for the materials that are being harvestedorder to make it possible to clear more ground, many groups are trying to find ways to use thePinyon/ Juniper to recoup some of the costs of the harvesting. Thanks to the work of Lanceand Michelle Lindbloom of Bloomin Ranch Service, a private contractor currently working inBeaver County, we were able to hold two field days. The field days demonstrated differentmethods of harvesting the pinyon/juniper and looked at ways of adding value to the harvestedtrees. During the field days, harvesting, handling and processing equipment weredemonstrated. Leading experts in the woody biomass and forestry industry addressed theimportance of restoring the woodlands and ways for industry and government to partnertogether to address the problem. A total of over 450 people have attended the two field daysand plans are being made to make this an annual event. Impacts • Over 450 people attend the two field days and plans are underway to make this an annual event Program Activities • Leading experts in the woody biomass and forestry industry taught participants the importance of The first Southern Utah Biomass Field day was held south of restoring the woodlands and ways for industry and Beaver, on October 18, 2010. Many expensive pieces of government to partner together to address the problem. equipment were brought to the field day at the owners expense. • Since the field days other equipment have been brought The second field day was held on June 3rd and 4th , 2011 and in and tested to see how it works on harvesting focuses on biomass education and utilization. One of the Pinyon/Juniper highlights of the 2011 field day was a demonstration of gasification provided by the University of Montana’s BioMax • The rangeland where the Pinyon/Juniper were thinned biomass generator. The BioMax’s gasification technology has become much more productive with grasses creates combustible gasses from a woody feedstock. Vendors growing where the trees were removed and the chance Introduction representing eight forestry equipment companies provided attendees with an up-close glimpse of biomass harvesting and of catastrophic fires has been greatly reduced.Lance and Michelle Lindbloom of Bloomin Ranch Service with the help of other groups processing in action. Equipment exhibits included a Bobcatorganized the event. The watershed contract that the BLM has with Bloomin Ranch skid steer with a Fecon BullHog mulcher, a WoodMizerService requires thinning of the Pinyon/Juniper while still leaving some Pinyon trees for portable sawmill, a BioBaler mulcher and compactor, andwildlife. Their contract also calls for removing excess slash from the treated areas. many others.
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