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  Biomass Energy
in the Great Lakes Region

Overview | General Resources | State and Provincial Resources | Related Resources
 
Energy: Biomass | Efficiency | Renewable | Wind

 
Overview
Biomass provides a renewable source of energy, and includes wood, crop residues, municipal waste, and other organic materials that can be converted into heat, process steam, electricity, and transportation fuel.
 
All biomass is composed of sugars, starches, and cellulose. Thus, any basic conversion process to release energy from biomass may, in theory, be used with any biomass resource. New technical developments are moving this theory into reality. For example, biogas, which usually is made from sewage and manure, now may be made from organic industrial waste and drier waste, including urban trash. Advanced combustion systems burn new processed waste fuels for high energy output and low pollution effects. Ethanol transportation fuel, which is made mostly from corn today, soon may also be made from trash, as well as from wood and grasses. Technical improvements also cut biofuel production costs. For example, development projects sponsored by the Great Lakes Regional Biomass Energy Program have cut the cost of major steps in ethanol production by 500 to 1000 percent. New production by-products also increase the value of biomass energy resources.
 
Today, biomass energy serves about 4 percent of the region's annual energy needs. It is the region's most significant renewable energy resource. Yet by some estimates, the Great Lakes states could produce enough energy from biomass resources to serve 15 to 20 percent of the region's energy needs.
 
Reference: Great Lakes Regional Biomass Energy Program

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General Resources
Bioenergy Mailing List
Center for Renewable Energy and Sustainable Technology (CREST)
This mailing list is for representatives from industry, academia and government to discuss biomass as a sustainable energy resource.

Biopower: Renewable electricy from plant materal
Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Network
Descriptive information on biopower, including programs, policies, benefits and feedstock issues.

Canada's Greenfuels
Information on ethanol and biodiesel, current news, and Canadian Renewable Fuels Association's newsletter, Renewable Fuels - Canadian Journal.

Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Network
U.S. Department of Energy (DOE)
EREN is the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy's premier resource for information on renewable energy and energy efficiency technologies.

Energy Information Administration
U.S. Department of Energy
The EIA is an independent statistical and analytical agency that maintains a comprehensive data and information program relevant to energy resources.

Great Lakes Regional Biomass Energy Program
Council of Great Lakes Governors
One of five regional biomass energy programs administered by the U.S. Department of Energy to encourage greater production and use of biomass for energy generation.

Great Lakes Wind Collaborative
The Great Lakes Wind Collaborative (GLWC) is a group established to build consensus and identify and address issues affecting the planning, development, and operation of wind power facilities in the Great Lakes region.

National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL)
U.S. Department of Energy (DOE)
NREL is the nation's leading laboratory for renewable energy and energy efficiency research.

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State and Provincial Resources
MICHIGAN
Energy and Regulatory Matters Information Service
Michigan Public Service Commission, U.S. Department of Energy
Established to increase the quality, frequency, and speed of information transfer and communications between state and federal agencies, individuals, and businesses interested in energy and regulatory matters.

Michigan Biomass Energy Program
Michigan State Government
Encourages increased production capacity for biomass energy derived from Michigan's resources through program policies, information dissemination, and demonstration projects.

MINNESOTA
Biomass Information
Minnesotans for An Energy-Efficient Economy (ME3)
A listing of biomass resources in Minnesota.

WISCONSIN
RENEW Wisconin
Promotes clean energy strategies for powering Wisconsin's economy in an environmentally responsible manner.

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Related Resources
GLIN: Agencies and Organizations, Energy
GLIN: Agriculture in the Great Lakes Region
GLIN: Forests and Forestry in the Great Lakes Region
GLIN: Pollution Prevention in the Great Lakes Region

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Updated: October 21, 2017
Selected Photos: Copyright ©John and Ann Mahan
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