Seen Monday. Seems to me that instead of burning trees tree farmers should start growing solar farms on some of their less useful land.
Deadline for early registration is Sunday, February 10...register today to save money!
It's 21 February 2013 in Forsyth.
Interest in forest biomass as a potential feedstock for renewable energy facilities has been especially keen for the past several years and much of the activity has been centered in Georgia. GFA and UGA are excited about hosting our fourth biennial conference to examine where we are with forest bioenergy development in Georgia and where we may be going in the near future. While many issues are becoming clearer, much uncertainty remains with regard to government policy and market prices for fossil fuels. This conference is an excellent opportunity to hear from some of the players on the front lines of developing markets, influencing government policies, and conducting research on how these changes may impact our wood supply system.
These are some of the topics that will be addressed during this conference by many of the people directly involved with these changes that are taking place in our state. Join us and stay abreast of these significant changes taking place in our forest industry.
The talk I think they should pay attention to is:
What does Low-Cost Natural Gas Mean for Future Biomass Use?
It means biomass can't compete economically, as Sterling Planet and the Valdosta-Lowndes County Industrial Authority discovered, especially with Georgia Power charging customers to subsidize new natural gas plants. And since solar power is already cheaper than natural gas, solar is way cheaper than biomass. Biomass energy production in the U.S. is only growing 3.7% per year, while solar is growing 60.9% a year, according to FERC. Putting solar panels on a few acres for regular solar income makes a lot more sense than burning a lot of acres of trees for potential biomass income that will never arrive.
So it would be a much better deal for tree farmers to put solar farms on some of their less fertile land. Maybe starting with solar panels on their farm workshops; I'm a tree farmer and a Georgia Forestry Association member, and that's what I've done.