U.S. Forest Service to Offer Woody Biomass Utilization Grants

The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Forest Service released a solicitation for the Woody Biomass Utilization Grants.

Funds are targeted to help improve forest restoration activities by using and creating markets for small diameter material and low-valued trees removed through forest restoration activities, such as reducing hazardous fuels, handling insect and diseased conditions, or treating forestlands impacted by catastrophic weather events. Goals of the grant program are to help reduce forest management costs by increasing value of biomass and other forest products generated from forest restoration activities; create incentives and/or reduce business risk for increased use of biomass from national forestlands; and institute projects that target and help remove economic and market barriers to using small-diameter trees and woody biomass. At least $4 million is expected to be available for grants under this program for FY07, however, this program is subject to Congressional appropriations. Both House and Senate have funded the program at $5 million, which is $45 million below its authorization in the Energy Policy Act of 2005. The pre-application deadline for the program is November 3, 2006 and the full application deadline is February 2, 2007.
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