Resources Provide Opportunities for Wood Energy Use in Minnesota


Biomass fact sheets, financial incentives and biomass thermal grant now available


(Minneapolis, MN) - Minnesota has a statewide team for supporting high efficiency wood energy systems. The Minnesota Statewide Wood Energy Team (MN SWET) 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 advance clean energy development.


With support from the USDA Forest Service, the team's 2014 programs include making technical resources, information, and funds available to support businesses and other facilities that are interested in commercially available wood energy systems. New fact sheets about biomass energy and financial information for project developers is now available online, including a MN SWET Fact Sheet, Community Biomass Handbook, Air Emissions from Modern Wood Energy Systems Fact Sheet, and a 'Why Use Biomass for Heating?' Fact Sheet.


"The Statewide Wood Energy Team is looking for commercial or municipal facilities in Minnesota that are currently stuck using high cost sources of energy and that are interested in looking at their options with biomass technologies," said Anna Dirkswager, Biomass Coordinator for the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources and manager of the Statewide Wood Energy Team. "Many private and public organizations have been using biomass energy for decades and today's modern and high-efficiency systems offer a next generation of opportunities." 


Another beneficial resource for those looking to implement wood energy projects throughout the state of Minnesota was recently released by the Minnesota Department of Agriculture - a Biomass Thermal Energy Grants Request for Proposals is now available. Eligible projects must increase the use of Minnesota's bioenergy resources, encourage self-reliance and security or promote sustainability, and involve bioenergy with a focus on woody biomass thermal applications. Up to half of the total project cost may be covered by the grant, with a maximum award amount of $150,000.  Applications must be received by Friday, October 3rd, 2014 at 4:00 pm (CST).


To download a copy of the Biomass Thermal Energy RFP, visit: Questions regarding the RFP should be submitted in writing to the grant administrator at All questions, along with the answers, will be posted on the FAQ website.


To learn about additional Clean Energy and Clean Technology Energy Finance Resources, visit:


For additional information regarding MN SWET resources, please contact Anna Dirkswager at (651) 259-5253 or



About the Minnesota Statewide Wood Energy Team

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.