Grant helps Terrace Community Forest launch wood grinding project
By Ellen Cools
On June 1, the Terrace Community Forest (TCF) began grinding and trucking wood waste, thanks to a $443,400 grant from the Forest Enhancement Society of BC (FESBC).
According to a government press release, the project will support four new jobs. The grant will help TCF ship the ground wood waste to Terrace, B.C.-based Skeena Bioenergy, which will use the fibre to produce wood pellets.
In the past few years, TCF has been thinning second-growth tree stands in its tenure area, bringing hemlock and balsam to a processing area to be delimbed and cut to length. The company stockpiled 15,000 cubic metres of the wood waste piled up to dry for two years, in order to reduce the wood’s moisture content. This makes the wood lighter, which means a higher volume can be transported at once, while also reducing the cost of drying at Skeena Bioenergy.
The company had stockpiled the wood while trying to find a way to utilize the fibre besides burning.
“Without this funding, we would be burning this fibre since it is otherwise uneconomical to transport it,” said Kim Haworth, general manager, TCF, in a press release. “Now, we can grind and store the white wood on site and supply the fibre to the pellet plant on an as-needed basis. We would rather see the fibre used, generate some revenue and provide economic, social and environmental benefits to our community.”
“We are pleased to fund the Terrace Community Forest project,” said Gordon Pratt, RPF, operations manage for FESBC, in a statement. “In the long run, it will help improve future forest practices to increase fibre utilization and reduce greenhouse gas emissions by reducing the burning of residual fibre.”