The Advanced Hardwoods Biofuels Northwest program (AHB) is developing hybrid poplar as an integral component of the biomass supply chain for Pacific Northwest bio-refineries. Future refineries will require dedicated tree plantations as an indispensable component of their feedstock supply portfolios in order to secure their capital investments. A strategic component of purpose-grown trees reduces feedstock supply and pricing uncertainties thereby improving refinery economics. Moreover, residual supplies alone are unlikely to support the extraordinary biomass volumes that will be needed to produce bio-fuels and bio-products. Using a hypothetical example of a 20 million gallon per-year bio-refinery, this presentation will illustrate how the scale, economics logistics, and production of a dedicated hybrid poplar operation can be integrated into the supply chain of Pacific Northwest bio-refineries.
This project is supported by an Agriculture and Food Research Initiative Competitive Grant no. 2011-68005-30407 from the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA).