Prepare for the Heating Season with Minnesota Statewide Wood Energy Team Biomass Resources


(Minneapolis, MN) - Facilities and businesses planning for the beginning of the heating season can prepare with biomass resources from the Minnesota Statewide Wood Energy Team (MN SWET). MN SWET, a statewide team for supporting high efficiency wood energy systems, includes diverse organizations and individuals with expertise to support effective use of wood energy technologies. MN SWET helps Minnesota facilities and businesses move toward realizing the opportunity to cut costs, support local economies and forest management, and advance clean energy development through the use of wood as energy. Opportunities exist for commercial and institutional buildings that currently use fuel oil and propane for energy looking to replace those systems with innovative wood energy systems. MN SWET is administered by the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources through a grant received from the USDA Forest Service.

Resources available to interested facilities include: a free on-site evaluation of potential cost savings to be gained when switching to wood energy, information from SWET Wood Energy Coaches regarding wood energy systems available in Minnesota, information on the opportunities available for financing wood energy installations and assistance in developing free intermediate feasibility studies for qualified facilities.

A biomass energy final feasibility request for proposal (RFP) that evaluates wood energy system installations is forthcoming. Initial eligibility criteria includes facilities that do not have access to natural gas, a scale of 1-5mmBTU, facilities that have capacity to utilize forest resources for energ
y and a 25 percent feasibility study cost share commitment. "The RFP will allow facilities looking to utilize modern biomass energy technologies a financial incentive and resources to do so," states Anna Dirkswager, Biomass Coordinator for the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources and Manager of the Statewide Wood Energy Team. "This serves as an important tool for facilities that don't have access to natural gas, especially considering last winter's extreme weather and the resulting spike in propane prices."

To learn more about MN SWET, the RFP and to view a list of available resources, visit:



The Minnesota Statewide Wood Energy Team (MN SWET) consists of individuals and organizations that work together to advance woody biomass goals and recognize the need to promote woody biomass utilization as a strategy to accomplish: forest management, diversified markets for the existing forest products industry, forest wildfire risk reduction, economic development and localized wealth retention, and state renewable energy strategies. The core team includes representation from the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, University of Minnesota, University of Minnesota Duluth, Natural Resources Research Institute, and the USDA Forest Service Wood Education and Resource Center, the Clean Energy Resource Teams, Dovetail Partners, and the Headwaters and Arrowhead Regional Economic Development Commissions. Additional partners include the Minnesota Department of Commerce, Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development, Iron Range Resources and Rehabilitation Board, USDA Rural Development, Minnesota Forest Resources Council, Great Plains Institute, BioBusiness Alliance of Minnesota, FVB Energy, WoodMaster, Fond du Lac Band of Superior Chippewa, and the Agricultural Utilization and Research Institute. The project manager is Minnesota DNR Biomass Coordinator, Anna Dirkswager.