California Awards $2.6 Million To Sierra Institute For Biomass Project

The California Energy Commission is awarding $2.6 million to the Sierra Institute for Community and Environment to build a small biomass plant between Feather River College and the county’s health and human services building in Quincy. “I was thrilled,” said Jonathan Kusel, executive director of the Sierra Institute. Kusel has been working on building a […]

The California Energy Commission is awarding $2.6 million to the Sierra Institute for Community and Environment to build a small biomass plant between Feather River College and the county’s health and human services building in Quincy.

“I was thrilled,” said Jonathan Kusel, executive director of the Sierra Institute. Kusel has been working on building a network of small biomass plants throughout the county that would provide heat and power to local entities. “We had the second highest rated proposal in the state,” Kusel said. “I take pride in this.”

When the plant is built, it will provide heat for the Feather River College dorms, and will provide electricity and heat to augment the geothermal system at the health and human services building.

Kusel estimates that it will save the county $40,000 to $45,000 annually in electric bills. Though deriving heat and power from biomass is a proven concept, this will be the first of installation of its type in the state. “That’s why the CEC is supportive,” Kusel said. Construction should get underway this year and Kusel is hopeful that the plant will be operational in 2016.

Facilities Director Dony Sawchuk, who is responsible for the health and human services building, is enthusiastic about the potential for utility savings. “This is perfect timing,” Sawchuk said. “We were looking at propane.”

From the Plumas County News: http://www.plumasnews.com/index.php/13556-state-awards-2-6-million-grant-to-sierra-institute-for-biomass-heat-and-power-project

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