Date of Award


Document Type

Union College Only

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts


Environmental Science and Policy

First Advisor

Jeffrey Corbin




alternative energy; energy; biofuel; wood; biomass


Efforts to develop alternative energy sources have spurred calls to increase cellulosic biofuel production from domestic biofuel sources. By 2035, the proportion of energy the United States derives from all types of biomass is expected to double from the current level of 5 percent (U.S. EIA 2009). Forests and crops have the potential to increase the amount of bioenergy and biobased products that are consumed sevenfold, which would help in achieving this percentage. While some of the greater demand for wood will derive from more efficient use of wood already harvested extracting more energy from wood will inevitably cause a change in land use and harvesting techniques to deliver a greater biomass supply. Out of this total potential of 1.3 billion dry tons more than 25 percent would have to come from more intensively managed forestlands that are currently being harvested for their timber resources (USDA and DOE 2005). For example, larger amounts of wood may be extracted from products residue, urban wood waste, or greater portion of standing trees may be removed, or harvest rotation may speed with the development of fast-growing hybrid tree varieties.