Bio-Mass Fuels Project of the Round Valley Indian Tribes

Phase I – Feasibility Study

Background/ Purpose:

The Round Valley Indian Tribes (RVIT), in collaboration with the Department of Interior (DOI), is evaluating the feasibility of siting a community-scale bioenergy facility in Round Valley. Targeted biomass feedstock for the bioenergy facility includes sustainably available forest biomass material from local hazardous fuels treatment and forest management activities. RVIT believes that this project can address significant needs of the Round Valley community including:

  • Economic development projects that will provide living-wage, long-term jobs and revenue that can be used to meet an array of Tribal needs.
  • Biomass utilization projects that reduce the risk of catastrophic wildfire, improve forest health, and improve local air quality.
  • Increased energy security through local distributed generation of sustainable renewable power providing enough electricity for approximately 3,000 households.

Project Team:

TSS Consultants has been selected as the primary contractor to carry out the technical and economic aspects of the Feasibility Study. Judith Harwood of Triple Bottom Line Solutions and Bruce Hilbach-Barger, a local Round Valley resident, will perform project management/oversight on behalf of the RVIT. The “Project Team” will consist of TSS, the project managers, a Tribal GIS expert, representatives from the Tribes’ Natural Resources Department, and representatives from the Tribal Council.

Project Goals:

  1. Utilize sustainably available forest biomass.
  2. Create living-wage jobs and revenue for the RVIT.
  3. Reduce the potential for catastrophic wildfire in the Round Valley region.
  4. Improve power distribution stability through local distributed generation, using sustainable and renewable resources as a primary feedstock.
  5. Support forest health improvement activities and a long-term market for excess forest biomass material.
  6. Find local applications and utilization opportunities for biochar, generated as a byproduct from facility operations that will in turn contribute to local economic development

Project Phases and Timeline:

The Phase I- Feasibility Study will begin in December 2014 and will be completed by May 2015. During this time period, project managers will pursue funding for additional pre-construction phases. The bioenergy facility development, construction, and commissioning is expected to take 3-5 years if the project is found to be feasible.

Community Involvement:

Two community outreach events are scheduled as part of the Phase I - Feasibility Study. Announcements for these events will be made via local community radio and posted on this website.

You can download a printable version of this information at the following link: Printable Bio-Mass Phase 1 Info

As there are many questions pertaining to this project and process, please visit the following dedicated page Biomass FAQs for the list of FAQs and Answers.

Last modified: May 05 2018.