Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Mang. Plan Beta Area

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This map shows the area selected for the forest management project. This area is located on the Waynesboro Watershed. The stand is referred to as Beta, and consits on 39 acres. Points of interset in the map are include wet areas, buffer zones, log landing, and the main haul road.

Monday, April 14, 2008

Dr. Finley Presentation

David Gillen
Fort 250 Forest Management Practices

Jim Finley Presentation

On Thursday April 10, 2008 Jim Finley, an expert on Forest Regeneration gave a presentation at Penn State Mont Alto Campus. Dr. Finley presented his topic on oak regeneration in Pennsylvania, and the problems that are occurring with oak regeneration.
Dr. Finley presented several key points that are hindering oak generation across the state. These problems include decreased forested land in Pennsylvania because of parcelization. By definition this is an increase in the subdivisions of forested property. He addressed the fact that today more people own smaller tracts of land rather than owning larger tracts of land. The statistic of 744,500 people own land in Pennsylvania that average 16 acres. Dr. Finley added that as land is passed from generation to generation it becomes more and more parcelized. The problem of parcelization causes problems for Forester because it is hard to manage timber on smaller tracts of land. For example 100 ac. is subdivided into five 20 ac. lots. This causes problems from a forestry perspective because each individual land owner has different expectations of what they intend to manage for on their property. However, programs are in place to help with this problem. One of these groups is identified as NIPF.
Dr. Finley also talked about why red maple and black birch are taking over as the most abundant species of regeneration, and that they have become 1 & 2 on the list of most common trees in Pennsylvania. Dr. Finley addressed that a fern understory is one of the problems with newly regenerating oaks. This fern understory is creating too much shade for the lower canopy, which is hindering regenerating tree species such as oak. Dr. Finley also added that deer are a problem to newly regeneration oaks in Pennsylvania.
Dr. Finley added that 50% - 60% of oak regeneration is coming from stump sprouts. Some other statistics that Dr. Finely presented was board foot volumes are at the highest point ever. Also mentioned was people are happy with high grading timber. Dr. Finley said this is due to a lack of public knowledge about forest management practices.
The article that I found pertaining to oak regeneration came straight from University Park by Dr. Finley. This article mentions that Penn State’s School of Forestry has been quietly studying oak regeneration for the past 11 years. The results have shown that 50% of forested land in Pennsylvania is not producing adequate regeneration for replacing harvested trees. Dr. Finley expresses that a species change from northern red oak to other less commercially valued tree species. Finley expresses that red maple, black birch, and black cherry are not preferred by deer for browsing. Now, these three tree species are #1, 2, &3 on Pennsylvania’s most common trees respectively, red oak being 10th. However, Dr. Finley does not believe that over browse by deer on oak is not the sole reason for what is happening to Penn’s woods.


Monday, February 18, 2008

Fuels for Schools, David Gillen

At the SAF meeting I listen to Robert Taylor talk about fuels for schools. This tied in with the topic that I researched the previous week titled; Utilization of Low Value Wood for Biofuel in Schools or Other Institutions.
Mt. View School is located near the Pocono’s, and uses wood as a biofuel in the school. The school has two buildings that are approximately 200,000 sq. ft. In 1991 a wood boiler was purchased to provide heat for the high, and elementary school. The two school are 1 ¼ mi. apart.
Robert explained that 350 cu. yards of wood chips usually lasts about three to four days. This supply can sometimes fluctuate depending on the outside temperature. Robert added that the system is very efficient, and has not broken for the 17 years.. Robert gave a brief description of how the machine worked. He explained that wood chips run on a belt which heads to an auger. This in turn goes to a hopper which dumps the chips into the boiler.
Combustion within the boiler reaches temperatures of 1900ºF. Because of this high temperature very little ash accumulates from burning the wood chips. Any ash that does remain however is removed to another hopper. These emissions are in turn used for fertilizers, and used for removal of ice at the schools.
Robert emphasized the benefits that are coming out this system. The benefits included saving money, reduced oil combustion, and reduced costs of maintenance. Robert also said that the cost of 1 ton of wood chips is equal to the price of 6 gallons of oil! In 2005 the school saved $68,000 from burning wood rather than oil. As of today the school has saved $89,000.
In tying this presentation with what I have already researched I can say with confidence that this system of heating is more economical, environmental, and even more efficient than oil. When researching this topic I did not find many industries or schools in the United States using this particular system. However, European nations are using this system much more, and are beginning to perfect the system. With what I have learned from my research, and the presentation of this topic, I can say that this system is the way of future, and will become a major heating source in the years to come.

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Utilization of Low Value Wood for Biofuel in Schools or Other Institutions

With the growing need for alternative energy sources in today’s world, the utilization of low quality wood for biofuels has become a reality.

Biomass is an organic material that has stored energy from the sun, and can be found in wood (1). This biomass in wood can be thought of as renewable resource because trees can be replanted (1). An example of the chemical energy in biomass released is heat from burning wood (1).

In the United States today wood, bark, sawdust, wood chips, and wood scrap only provides roughly 2% of energy (1).

Manufacturing plants in wood and paper industry have put their wood waste products to produce their own steam and electricity (1).

The Georgia Biofuel Directory came out with a report with industries that reported the use of burning fuels for energy (2).
Table 1. – Industries in Georgia Burning Self Generated Biofuels
Tree Chips
4,500 – 7,800
8,000 – 9,000

Another company using wood biofuels is located in Soperton, Ga. is using trees and wood scraps for biofules in automobiles (3).