How U.S. Department of Agriculture issues grant of $1.5 million to enhance Biogas innovations

West Biofuels, a pioneering company based in Woodland, California, has recently secured a substantial grant of $1.5 million (€1.3m) from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). This grant aims to further enhance the sustainable utilization of forest products while fostering innovation and bolstering local economies.

The core expertise of West Biofuels lies in engineering, procurement, construction (EPC), operation, and maintenance of biomass facilities. Leveraging their expertise and dedication, they have been awarded approximately $1.2 million (€1m) from the Community Wood Energy Grant Program for their latest ambitious project, the Hat Creek Bioenergy Facility. It is scheduled to commence operations in the spring of 2024.

The Community Wood Energy Grant Program primarily focuses on supporting projects that involve thermally-led community wood energy systems or the establishment of innovative wood product manufacturing facilities. The funding received by West Biofuels will significantly contribute to the development of the Hat Creek Bioenergy Facility and drive the growth of sustainable wood energy markets.

Notably, the company also received an additional $300,000 (€273,600) from the Wood Innovation Grant Program. This funding is designated for their planned bioenergy facility in Mariposa, California. The federal program encourages the expansion of wood energy markets and traditional wood utilization projects. It also actively promotes the utilization of wood as a construction material in various commercial, institutional, and multifamily buildings.

The bioenergy facilities in Burney and Mariposa are expected to become major players in the sustainable energy sector. Each facility is projected to generate three megawatts of clean power annually by converting forest organic byproducts, once considered waste, into valuable sources of renewable electricity, heat, and biochar.

The Hat Creek Bioenergy Facility, in particular, is estimated to utilize around 30,000 bone-dry tonnes of forest waste each year. To put this into perspective, this quantity would be enough to fill approximately 171 Olympic-sized swimming pools. This innovative approach not only addresses the issue of forest waste but also contributes significantly to reducing wildfire risks in the region.

Kristen Decker, the chief financial officer of West Biofuels, expressed her gratitude for the federal government’s recognition and investment in the company’s vision. She highlighted that West Biofuels’ efforts are aimed at transforming California’s forest waste into clean, renewable energy that can empower communities and mitigate environmental challenges. Additionally, their bioenergy facilities play a crucial role in fostering rural economic growth and aligning with California’s ambitious climate goals. The company takes immense pride in contributing solutions to some of the state’s most pressing challenges.

With this significant grant funding and their commitment to sustainability and innovation, West Biofuels is poised to become a trailblazer in the field of clean energy, making a lasting impact on both the environment and local economies.


  • Samson Adeyemo

    An experienced broadcast and print media journalist with nose for news and proven track records of success without compromising objectivity.

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