Biomass

DEFINITION: Organic matter, such as timber and crops, that can be converted to fuel and is generally regarded as a renewable fuel source. Biomass is sustainable and generally carbon-neutral because the carbon released in the combustion process is offset by the carbon trapped in the organic matter by photosynthesis during its growth. In biomass power plants or boilers, wood waste or other waste is burned to produce stream that runs a turbine to make electricity.

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Onsite generation can help businesses save money on energy bills and even generate income by selling surplus energy back into the grid

edie publishes free business guide to onsite energy generation

Organisations and professionals with an interest in producing and consuming energy at a particular location away from the grid now have access to a free, comprehensive 'edie explains' guide which answers all of the key questions surrounding onsite generation.

edie explains: Onsite generation

This edie explains business guide, produced in association with E.ON, provides an in- depth summary of onsite generation, which allows businesses to make and use their own energy at a particular location, rather than buying that energy through the grid.

ETI argues that delivery of energy crops must be balanced with the demand for land use from other agricultural sectors

ETI: UK-grown biomass can support farmers and deliver carbon savings

Planting 1.4m hectares of non-food crops dedicated to the production of bioenergy can deliver "genuine" emissions savings and provide a degree of income security for UK farmers, according to new research from ETI.

The UK is the biggest importer of wood pellets in the European Union (EU), shipping in more than seven million tonnes from the US and Canada in 2015

UK's biomass ambition: Low-cost solution or forest full of loopholes?

A new report has outlined that using waste and biomass for gasification can help the UK meet its 2050 carbon targets at a lower cost to the economy, on the same day that research condemned a biomass standard used by Drax, E.ON and DONG as a "forest of loopholes".

Wind energy output peaked at 9.5GW on Wednesday 7 June

Windy weather brings new renewable energy record

Windy weather brought with it a new renewable record on Wednesday lunchtime as output from wind, solar, biomass and hydro peaked at 19.3GW - more than half of all demand.

While poultry litter biomass has received a boost across the country, using ground coffee waste for a similar purpose is expanding outside of London

Coffee grounds and poultry litter proving a viable biomass option in the UK

As innovative waste coffee recycling firm bio-beans expands its collection service across the University of Birmingham, the UK Government has revealed that Combined Heat and Power (CHP) plants using poultry litter will receive the highest tariffs under the Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI).

Energy Transitions Commission: Better energy, greater prosperity

The Energy Transitions Commission’s flagship report sets out achievable pathways to limit global warming to well below 2C while stimulating economic development and social progress.

The risks and rewards of brokers

As the non-domestic retail water market opens on April 1, brokers are anticipating a boom in business. edie sister title Utility Week has provided an in-depth guide to the utility broker market as it stands, and considers how it is likely to change after market opening.

SDGs mean business: How credible standards can help companies deliver the 2030 Agenda

This new report published by WWF and ISEAL indicates how businesses can contribute strongly to the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and unlock new market opportunities by using credible voluntary sustainability standards to transform entire sectors and supply chains.

The UK is the biggest importer of wood pellets in the European Union (EU), shipping in more than seven million tonnes from the US and Canada in 2015

Biomass 'carbon neutrality' debate continues to divide opinion

Using biomass, specifically energy derived from burning wood, as a crux in the UK's effort to transition towards a low-carbon economy has come under scrutiny again, after the former secretary for energy and climate change and his ex-special advisor clashed over its use.

10 top tips to drive engagement with your CSR report

What are the key components required to produce a sustainability report which drives engagement on a range of CSR issues among key stakeholders? edie brings you the secrets to sustainability reporting success with this latest top-tips guide for businesses.

Warwickshire's Upton House is now fuelled by two wood-pellet boilers, saving £6,000 a year on energy bills and 55 tonnes of carbon emissions. Photo: National Trust

National Trust champions on-site solutions in renewables revolution

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First Mile's chief commercial officer Joe Allen (left) and Caffè Nero's commercial director Matt Spencer (right) are pleased by the success of the ongoing partnership

Caffé Nero reports coffee-waste-to-biofuel success, plans expansion

Italian-style coffee shop chain Caffé Nero is looking to extend an innovative coffee-to-biofuel recycling scheme beyond greater London after a successful partnership with recycling company First Mile and technology firm Bio-Bean.

Birmingham Town Hall. A series of workshops will provide Midlands businesses with specialist expertise about advanced thermal technologies and biological conversion processes

UK businesses to accelerate bioenergy opportunities through EU grant

A European Union (EU) funded project is set to support firms across the West Midlands to reap the economic and environmental benefits from bioenergy and thermal technologies.

Sustainability Leaders Awards 2017: meet the winners!

Welcome to the winners report for the 2017 Sustainability Leaders Awards. Organised by edie, these awards recognise excellence across the spectrum of sustainable business; from the best efficiency programmes through to product innovation, from stakeholder engagement and CSR initiatives to the people making it happen.

The New Plastics Economy: Catalysing action

This new report is one of the first key deliverables of the New Plastics Economy initiative.It represents a logical next step to the 2016 report: from rethinking the future of plastics to catalysing action.

While low in emissions intensity, sugary food and drink products are relatively resource-intensive at every stage in the supply chain

Sweet success? How the sugar tax will impact Britain's low-carbon commitments

Many of us will have made a healthy New Year's resolution, often tailored to running off a Christmas dinner or two and reducing the amount of sugar in our diets. In light of the UK's upcoming sugar tax, what impact could a sugar-reduced diet have on the environment and the sustainability of big food retailers?

Bio-bean became the first company in the world to industrialise the process of recycling waste coffee into biofuel in 2012

Costa partners with Bio-bean to convert 3,000 tonnes of coffee waste to biofuel

The UK's largest coffee chain Costa has entered into a partnership with biomass recycling firm Bio-bean, which will see 3,000 tonnes of Costa's waste coffee grounds used as biofuel.

The RHI consultation had attracted criticism for proposing to slash tariffs for biomass heat by 45%, which was projected by the Government to lead to a 98% drop in installations

Solar thermal remains part of renewable heat reforms

The Government has today (14 December) set out new proposals for the Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI). All four currently-supported technologies will remain part of the scheme.

The fuel is believed to be the world’s first of its kind produced from forest wood

Alaska Airlines flies first commercial jet powered by forest biomass

Alaska Airline passengers have taken to the skies in a "world-first" commercial flight running on sustainable alternative jet fuel made from forest residuals from the Pacific Northwest.

Heat networks can deliver significant carbon savings, but just 2% of the UK's heat is currently supplied by such systems, leaving the nation far behind other European countries

BEIS compromises on renewable heat support, announces new heat network funding

The UK Government is seemingly beginning to take heed of advice to focus on delivering low-carbon heating systems, with two new announcements which could effectively reduce emissions from heating demand in towns and cities and begin to restore investor confidence in the neglected sector.

Drax’s biomass storage domes, which hold 300,000 tonnes of compressed wood pellets between them - enough to power Leeds, Manchester, Sheffield and Liverpool for more than 12 days. Photo: Drax

Britain's biomass generation carries big emissions risk, report claims

The UK's renewable energy industry has hit back at new economic analysis which finds that biomass power could be causing more carbon pollution than burning coal or natural gas, claiming it is "distorting the facts".

An artists' impression of the new Waterside campus, which is expected to be opened in 2018 and will serve more than 15,000 students

University of Northampton goes green with new Waterside campus

Students at the University of Northampton will soon have their heating and hot water generated by a CO2-saving on-site energy centre, incorporating woodchip biomass boilers and a combined heat and power (CHP) system.

The data forms another example of the UK’s ever-changing energy mix, and to summarise the latest trends edie round’s up six notable factors found within the crux of the data

What next for the UK as coal hits all time low but renewables falter?

On Thursday (29 September) the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) released UK energy statistics for the second quarter of 2016, but with coal and renewables generation both falling, does the Government need to adjust its energy policy?

The energy generated will be used to power the new processing plant and provide heat for the North Terminal

Gatwick to build world's first airport energy-from-waste facility

Gatwick will become the first airport in the world to generate energy from Category 1 waste, when it launches an onsite processing plant in November.