There is a new online resource for Western Upper Peninsula residents curious about cost-saving advantages of wood pellet heating. Rural homeowners are encouraged to visit www.upbiofuel.com/calculator/. By entering current heating costs, the calculator will determine approximate annual savings and return on investment, based on professional installation of a quality wood pellet stove.
A wood pellet is a piece of ground wood, dehydrated and compressed to twice the energy density of green wood. “One thing we do really well locally is grow and harvest trees. Utilizing wood pellets to heat homes in rural areas of the Western U.P. is a sustainable and viable energy solution,” says Kim Stoker, Executive Director of the Western Upper Peninsula Planning and Development Region (WUPPDR).
The cost of oil, natural gas and propane is historically high—and rising. Locally-sourced pellet fuel reduces dependence on these non-renewable fossil fuels. Most adults, including elderly, are capable of operating a wood pellet stove—no log splitting required. Additionally, wood pellet fuel has the potential to create a local industry, circulating fuels dollars in the local economy.
The U.P. BioFuel project is made possible through funding sought and received by WUPPDR. The goal of this collaborative effort is to realize the potential for growing biomass, to be harvested and used as a valuable fuel source, on unused or underused agricultural land in the Western Upper Peninsula.