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RENEWABLE ENERGY FROM FOREST RESOURCES:
An Investigation of the Complex Interrelated Issues Associated with Generating Automotive Fuels From Lignocellulosic Biomass

MUSES

Michigan
Technological
University
Sustainable Futures Institute
1400 Townsend Drive
Houghton, Michigan 49931

Phone: 906.487.3612
Fax: 906.487.2943
e-mail: sfi@mtu.edu


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Geographic Information Systems:
Field Study - Kinross Air Base
Faculty:
Ann Maclean , PhD;
Professor, Geographic Information Systems/Remote Sensing;
School of Forest Resources and Environmental Science
Grad Students:

Sinan Abood
Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering
Anthony Landon
School of Forest Resources and Environmental Science



Frontier Renewable Resources, LLC is building an ethanol-from-woody-biomass facility in Kinross Township in the eastern Upper Peninsula of Michigan. Feedstock harvested from the surrounding area will include aspen and northern hardwoods.

Sustaining the feedstock is critical to the profitability of the plant as well as the environment. This requires an assessment of the existing feedstock as well as determining where to plant additional trees in the form of energy crop plantations.

Frontier approached Michigan Technological University to conduct a feedstock inventory of currently available woody biomass and to evaluate sites for future planting. Using a geographic information system (GIS) allows us to determine where existing feedstock is growing, who owns it, its accessibility for harvesting, and the transportation costs to move it from the woods to the processing facility. In addition, the GIS permits the integration of soils, topographic, transportation infrastructure and land ownership to determine the best sites for energy crop plantations.



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