Forestry to Lead the New Energy Frontier

Biomass energy is energy such as electricity, boiler fuels, or motor fuels, that can be derived from living things.  It is one of the most promising new techniques for reducing our dependence on fossil fuels, and foresters may be in a position to lead this new movement.

Of all the organic residues potentially available for biomass energy in Louisiana, the largest number of tons available for use is from our forests.  Currently, all but 2% of the residue from milling is used to produce energy for production of the primary wood products; but that 2% could supply enough energy for 4,068 homes!  And the unused logging slash and sub-merchantable material left in the forest could supply an additional 234,244 homes with energy.

To learn more about how this new energy frontier will affect a forester’s work, the Louisiana Society of American Foresters, jointly with the Mississippi SAF, will present a high quality program of speakers April 17-19 at the Natchez Convention Center in Natchez, MS.

Advance registration will be accepted through April 2, 2007, and is open to all SAF members, their spouses, and forestry students, as well as non-members who would like to learn more about this promising new field.  Participants may also register at the door the day of the program.

Prominent speakers include Mark Rey, Under-Secretary for Natural Resource and the Environment; Fred Deneke of the 25 x ’25 Renewable Energy Working Group; Harry L. Haney, Jr., a Garland Gary Emeritus Professor of Forestry at Virginia Tech University; and Dick Carmichael, General Manager of The Price Companies and Price BIOstock Services. John McMahon, National President of the Society of American Foresters will also speak on SAF Leadership, Vision and Directions on Energy Initiatives.

Recreational activities offered include golf, sporting clays, and a cooking demonstration.  Lodging is available at the Natchez Eola Hotel, Isle of Capri Casino, and the Comfort Suites Riverfront where discounted blocks of rooms have been reserved.

Up to 12 hours of category 1 CFE credits are potentially available from the SAF at this session.  Check with the registration desk for a certificate.

For more information, contact Jeff Rogers at 601-587-1112 or by e-mail at jlrogers@gapac.com.  Agenda and Registration forms can be found on the LA SAF website at www.lasaf.homestead.com.