Redmond company receives $250k grant to develop uses for woody biomass
Mar 23,2007 00:00 by Bend_Weekly_News_Sources

JTS Animal Bedding will receive a portion of the $6.2 million granted to more than two dozen small businesses nationwide

Agriculture Secretary Mike Johanns this week announced the award of $6.2 million in grants to more than two dozen small businesses and community groups to develop innovative uses for woody biomass, including renewable energy and new products, from national forests.

 

JTS Animal Bedding, also known as JT Shavings, of Redmond, Oregon will receive $250,000 to develop uses for woody biomass

JTS Animal Bedding of Redmond, a major supplier of wood shavings for horse bedding on the West Coast, will receive $250,000 of the $6.2 million.  Two other Oregon companies or community groups will also receive grants: Malheur Lumber Company of John Day will receive $250,000, and Sustainable NorthwestHealthy Forests, Healthy Communities of Portland will receive $249,560.

"These grants help communities, entrepreneurs and others turn residues from forest restoration activities into marketable forest and energy products," said Johanns. "Not only will these projects reduce the risk of wildfire, they will help us to achieve the President's energy goals. Our farm bill proposals would take this effort to the next level by providing funding for research and new woody biomass projects."

The Administration's farm bill proposals would accelerate the development of new technologies to better utilize low-value woody biomass by authorizing $150 million in 10 year mandatory funding for Forest Service research.

The grants will help create markets for small-diameter material and low-valued trees removed from forest restoration activities, such as reducing hazardous fuels, handling insect and diseased conditions, or treating forestlands impacted by catastrophic weather.

The Forest Service, a USDA agency, selected 26 small businesses and community groups as grant recipients. Awarded grants ranged from nearly $125,000 to $250,000. According to requirements, all 26 recipients provided at least 20 percent of the total project cost. Non-federal matching funds ranged from $62,500 to more than $2 million per project, for a total of almost $12 million.

The Forest Service's State and Private Forestry, Technology Marketing Unit at the agency's Forest Products Laboratory in Madison, Wis. will administer the grant program.

Grantees, chosen from 93 applications requesting more than $20 million in funding support, proposed a wide array of innovative uses for woody biomass.