Willow to Burn
Jonathan Pitt wrote:
“I am interested to find out more about “short rotation crops” for fuel such as willow. I know there is a fair amount going on in the Midlands but wondered if W&PBC had any initiatives/plans or opinions on this form of fuel to use for boiler heating or logs etc?”
Pete West, Renewable Energy Development Officer, Dorset County Council, Tel: 01305 228530, wrote:
“As far as I know the only energy crops planted in Dorset are 3 hectares of willow at Kingston Maurwood College and some miscanthus on the Somerset/ Dorset border. The Dorset Energy Group has prepared a guidance leaflet for farmers with useful weblinks (see attachment).
(See attached file: Final Short Rotation2 March 09.pdf)”
“I’ve just remembered that there is a 2- day energy crops technical training
course at Kingston Maurward College on 11th and 12th Feb. It is free to
farmers and landowners and £155 for consultants and local authority staff.
There may be scope for negotiation as I heard there have only been 4
bookings to date.
The course will cover look at how to grow, manage and market energy crops.
For further info see the link and attachment.
Its being run by Kevin Lindegaard who used to work here as the Renewable
Energy Development Officer (my predecessor) . He assisted Kingston Maurward
to plant their 3 hectres of willow.
(See attached file: VTS Energy Crops flyer.pdf)”
Jon Orrell wrote:
“I had a chat with Gary Hedges last week about many topics.
One was biomass heating and the possibilities it offers
for heating or combined head and power.
This is where one also generates electricity.
It does not work well on small sites but would in a
Hospital, council office or swimming pool.
A brainstorming thought would be to use the marsh area (
boggy so great for willows ) round the swimming pool for
trees to power its heating.
It propabably still needs more price rises in oil / gas to
force the issue but it is very sensible to raise it now
for when a major overhaul of any heating system is
procured locally. John Toblin and I advised the Boscowen
pool on sustainable heating last year.
On a personal note I have planted about 50 willows so far
in my field and have another 20 on my front drive waiting
to go in.
Willow or Ash seem to be ideal choices”
Steve Atkins of Transition Town Dorchester Energy Group wrote:
The Transition Town Dorchester Energy Group visited the Kingston Maurward coppice & biomass boiler in 2008, the write-up is at the bottom of the page here: http://transitiontowndorchester.org/Projects/Energy/energy.html
There’s an interesting post on Transition Culture (also read through the comments): http://transitionculture.org/2008/05/19/is-burning-wood-really-a-long-term-energy-descent-strategy/
Hope this helps
Margaret Somerville writes:
The Chiswell Community has just planted 100 white willows on the Incline Community Orchard at Verne Common, initially as a wind break, but we know they can be a fuel crop….we hope to plant more eventually. They were only planted two weeks ago as whips so they are really just an idea on a small scale at the moment!”