BIOMASS – THE ONLY RENEWABLE FUEL
The name “Biomass” was invented about 1975 to describe natural materials used as energy sources. The Office of Technology Assessment (OTA) estimated in 1980 that biomass could potentially supply more than 20% of US energy requirements – if we were serious about energy independence (we’re not, since oil and oil profits are international). Biomass now supplies 3% of US energy (see EIA and their table of biomass consumption).
While biomass is one of the best forms of renewable energy, it is not a great fuel. It occurs in a wide variety of forms (wood, paper, trash, …). This can be reduced by densification (pelletization) to a uniform fungible fuel that can be easily shiped, stored and used.