Woody Biomass Project Moves into Final Phase


A first-of-its-kind regional assessment for woody biomass in Southeastern North Carolina is moving into its third and final phase. Conducted in partnership with the Biofuels Center of North Carolina, the study has focused attention on promising woody biomass production sites in Robeson and Sampson counties. The recently completed second phase of the project considered biomass-specific infrastructure needs of the sites. “Phase III will consider transportation assets within 50-mile radii of the two sites,” says Joe Melvin, Director of Business Development for North Carolina’s Southeast. “The goal is to be able to better market these sites to biofuels producers,” Mr. Melvin says.

Based in Oxford, N.C., the Biofuels Center is working with the N.C. Southeast and its counterparts in the Charlotte, Eastern and Northeast regions on harnessing the job creation potential of woody biomass, forestry byproducts that can be utilized as a sustainable energy source. The assessment dovetails with promotional efforts N.C. Southeast is now undertaking with its economic development partners and allies. Regional leaders, for example, will soon travel to Denver to attend the International Biomass Conference, an annual gathering of bio-energy producers, energy crop growers, utility representatives, equipment providers and others involved in the industry.