BIOMASS

«The goal is to replace fossil fuel with a renewable energy source»

Alexandre Couture — Vice-president of Sequoia Industries inc.

WHAT IS BIOENERGY?

«Bioenergy is any type of energy produced from biomass. Biomass being defined as any material derived from living matter. For example, all parts of a tree are considered to be biomass. This biomass can be used as energy to produce heat. Many people are becoming more and more interested in using the biomass left behind after clear cutting. This type of biomass is commonly known as forestry residue or wood waste. Branches or non-commercial species not sought after by other industries are types of forestry residue or biomass. Bioenergy from a forest is an energy that produces very little carbon and if it comes from a stable well-managed forest, it becomes a perpetually renewable energy source. And it’s also locally produced. So for communities situated near a forest it is an accessible and reliable source of energy, available right where it’s needed. Not only resulting in the reduction of transport costs but also in aiding in the reduction of large amounts of greenhouse gas».

David Paré
Scientific Researcher

Canadian Forest Service

A WINNING FORMULA FOR OPTIMUM PERFORMANCE

Harvesting, storage and use of forest biomass are the three steps that an energy producer must take into account if he wishes to get the maximum benefit from his fuel. Useful information about the limitless biomass cycle

1st step in the limitless biomass cycle

HARVEST THE BIOMASS



DURING A FAVORABLE PERIOD

Harvesting at the right time is essential if you want good quality fuel. In the fall as the days get shorter the sap flowing through the trees starts to slow down.  It is therefore recommended that you harvest your biomass during the months of October, November, December and January. Biomass harvested during this time period dries more quickly thereby providing more efficient heat.

IT’S LIKE GARDENING

The exploitation of a forest can be done in various ways. Nevertheless Sequoia supports the idea of selective cutting, a type of arboriculture, where specific trees are selected for cutting, including windfalls, diseased, dead or decaying trees that can be harvested. This type of maintenance allows the forest to grow and thrive while letting the sun through to encourage new growth.

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FSC CERTIFICATION STANDARDS


In the field of forestry, the FSC Standard (Forest Stewardship Council) is recognized and respected worldwide. When assigned to a green space this stamp certifies that the arboriculture practiced in these areas has met with the highest standards of responsible forest management. FSC certified, some co-operative forestry groups have offered to help woodlot owners in the development of their forest.
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FOREST WASTE
LEFT BEHIND

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BIOMASS TAKEN
FROM THE FOREST

 

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SELECTIVE CUTTING
UNDER FSC STANDARDS

 

2nd step in the limitless biomass cycle

STORING THE BIOMASS


DRYING PERIOD

Did you know that over half the weight found in a freshly cut log is water? If you were to burn this log the same day as you cut it a large portion of the heat generated would be used to evaporate this water. It is therefore recommended that you store your wood for a minimum of 24 months in order to gain the maximum of thermal heat found therein.

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THE PROPER WAY


To keep the moisture content of your biomass as low as possible start by choosing the desired length of your log. Then as soon as it’s cut and split place it in stackable racks. This storage system removes the logs from the damp earth and increases the drying process.  The best idea is to leave these racks outside during the summer; the sun helps to burn off the moisture content while the wind blows it away. However as summer draws to a close and the rainy autumn begins it is important to store the biomass in a well-ventilated shelter.
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CUTTING DOWN THE BIOMASS

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SPLITTING THE BIOMASS

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DRYING THE BIOMASS AIDED
BY THE SUN AND THE WIND

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STORING THE BIOMASS
IN A WELL-VENTILATED SHELTER

ACHEIVING « SOLID BIOMASS FUEL» CERTIFICATION

Today, based on its own standards for «solid biomass fuel», Sequoia is able to determine if a biomass is ready for energy production or still needs a little more time. Biomass that has been properly stored for a minimum of 24 months normally produces a biomass that is in compliance with this standard. Under these conditions the biomass reaches a humidity level equal to the surrounding ambient air which is under 24%.

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LIGHTENING THE LOAD

In addition to increasing the thermal efficiency of the biomass the Sequoia storage method has another advantage, lighter fuel for the energy producer. A cord of freshly cut hardwood (4’x4’x8′) weighs around 5 500 lbs. (2 494 kg). However once its humidity level has been lowered to the same level as the surrounding ambient air this same cord of wood weighs around 3 100 lbs. (1 406 kg).  Therefore each log has lost about 40 % of its bulk thus becoming much easier to handle.

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LIGHTER BIOMASS

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LIGHTER BIOMASS ON AVERAGE A CORD OF (4'x4'x8') WOOD CONTAINS 168 LOGS

3rd step in the limitless biomass cycle

EXPLOITING THE BIOMASS


REGARDLESS OF THE SPECIES IS

Having fuel with a low humidity level is great. But in order for it to reach its full potential it must also have an efficient heating system. The Blue Sky energy generator from Sequoia was designed so that any type of forestry biomass would produce maximum heat.  So you can use wood from your own woodlot regardless of the species or condition.

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ECONOMIC AND EFFICIENT


The moisture content found in the fuel greatly influences the performance level of the biomass system. The dryer the biomass the more power and heat generated plus less fuel is consumed by the generator. On the flip side the damper the biomass the less power and heat generated plus more fuel is consumed by the generator.


A fallen, diseased, dead or rotting tree has little or no market value. However once it has been harvested and has passed through the limitless biomass cycle it becomes a renewable energy source that’s worth its weight in gold. If it is prepared properly this source of carbon neutral clean energy fuel provides significant savings when used in a Blue Sky energy generator.

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WHAT IS THE CARBON MARKET?

On January 1st 2013 Quebec launched a cap and trade system for greenhouse gas emission rights (SPEDE) – commonly referred to as « the carbon market » A year later on January 1st 2014, Quebec officially linked its system to that of California as part of the Western Climate Initiative (WCI). Quebec thus became a pioneer in the largest carbon market in North America and the first carbon market to be exploited by the heads of state from other countries. Revenue from the carbon market is sent to the Green Fund where the total amount is then reinvested to help implement the 2013-2020 Action Plan on Climate Change (PACC 2013-2020), whose measures will help reduce GHG emissions. Besides helping to build a stronger economy Quebec has now become a frontrunner in reducing carbon emissions and in supporting climate change.

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