Nebraska Forest Service offering biomass energy system grants

By Anna Simet | September 18, 2014

The Nebraska Forest Service announced it will offer two cost-share assistance grants for organizations including municipalities, universities, hospitals and greenhouses that wish to install woody biomass-fired energy systems.

Funding for the program originated from theWildfire Control Act of 2013, which calls for the development of markets for woody biomass generatedfrom forest thinnings.

Adam Smith, BFS forest products utilization team leader, said the grants will help cover the upfront costs of wood-fueled energy systems. They may include heating, cooling or electricity projects. “Historically, there has been a lack of capital assistance for the development and installation of these energy systems, often derailing potential projects,” he said, adding that the grants will allow  recipients to more quickly benefit from fuel savings, potentially a 50 percent each month.

The NFS notice indicates two types of grant funding are available—a cost-share cost-share assistance to public, private, for-profit and nonprofit agencies or organizations located in Nebraska to purchase and install woody energy systems, including the construction of new systems and the renovation orexpansion of existing energy systems, and a cost-share assistance for contractual services for technical engineering feasibility studies that investigate the potential for wood energy use.

The application deadline for the grants is Oct. 31. More information is available here.