Announcing the Formation of the
Pennsylvania Biomass Energy Association

In early June, a group of biomass industry leaders began to take the necessary steps needed to establish the Pennsylvania Biomass Energy Association (PBEA), an industry-driven nonprofit association.  PBEA will promote sustainable biomass use for heat and power applications and advocate for state and federal programs to support biomass thermal and power projects.

The PA Biomass Working Group and the Fuels for Schools Program have served as biomass outreach and education programs in Pennsylvania since 2001 and 2005, respectively.  Both organizations focused their efforts on the use of biomass for thermal applications, and to a lesser extent, power generation.  As a result, projects across the state have shown sustainable biomass can be used in a cost-effective, environmentally responsible manner to provide heat in a broad array of applications from residential to community scale levels. At the same time, the Commonwealth has become home to a growing number of anaerobic digesters producing on-site electric generation from biogas. And the state is now witnessing the development of small scale and company specific biomass combined heat and power (CHP) projects and distributed generation projects.

In 2010, several PA Biomass Working Group participants began to discuss the need to reorganize the Working Group into an industry-driven association that would serve Pennsylvania’s growing biomass heat and power industry. To meet the continuing need and interests from the industry, the West Penn Power Sustainable Energy Fund provided financial and technical support to help create of a formal statewide association, and has retained PA Energy Resources Group to help plan and establish the association.

PBEA will center its activities on three broad focus areas:

• Sustainable Biomass Feedstocks,
• Technology and Project Development, and
• Outreach and Public Policy

PBEA is currently seeking to engage industry leaders in this association so that the biomass thermal industry will have a united voice. We encourage you to become a part of this organization and to help make the decisions that will support continued growth in the industry.

For more information, and to join PBEA, please contact Melissa Gauthe at (717) 233-8606, ext. 3 or melissa@pa-erg.com.