Biomass Energy Training Curriculum – TN

Bioenergy Curriculum graphic
This curriculum  provides training on biomass energy to extension agents and local officials so that they may deliver this information to their stakeholders. While it is written as a training guide for TN, much of the information is applicable throughout the Southeastern US region.

This curriculum was developed through a Southern SARE grant and collaboration between Tennessee State University, the University of Tennessee,, and USDA-Rural Development. 


Link to the full TN Biomass Energy Training Curriculum (a 254 page downloadable

Biofuel Production and Improving Water Quality

Learn which biofuels require less inputs and strategies to reduce pollution.

Nitrates are most frequently detected in groundwater where nitrogen fertilizer is most heavily used; but exceptions to this pattern occur. USGS image.

Table Of Contents

Water Quality

Biofuel crops can help improve water quality because some need less fertilizer, are perennials, and have a more closed canopy. In order for production of agricultural energy crops to be considered sustainable, practices must be in …

Gauging Farm Energy Sustainability – Table of Contents


How Sustainable are Your Farm Energy Systems?

Learn about sustainability indicators used to gauge and evaluate a farm’s progress toward energy sustainability.

Solar installation at Harlow Farm, Westminster, VT. Photo: Susan Harlow

Table of Contents

What Is a Sustainability Indicator?

Sustainability indicators are measurable or observable features that can be used to test principles and criteria of sustainability. Sustainability indicators could include quantifiable measures of resource use efficiency, energy, food security, land use impacts

Justin Heavey, State University of New York

Justin Heavey is a senior research support specialist for the Willow Project at the State University of New York, College of Environmental Science and Forestry (SUNY-ESF) in Syracuse, New York. Since 2008, he has been managing energy and sustainability projects in higher education.
In his present work, Justin helps landowners and other stakeholders who grow, use, or are simply interested in bioenergy crops. The expanding willow bioenergy industry in New York State and the Northeast benefits from his technical and

Resources from CenUSA – Sustainable Production and Distribution of Bioenergy for the Central USA

Sponsoring Partner

Funded by AFRI. Learn More.




CenUSA Bioenergy is a coordinated research and education effort investigating the creation of a regional system in the Central US for producing advanced transportation fuels from perennial grasses on land that is either unsuitable or marginal for row crop production. In addition to producing advanced biofuels, the proposed system will improve the sustainability of existing cropping systems by reducing agricultural runoff of nutrients in soil and increasing carbon sequestration.…

Research Summary: Exploring On-Farm Pyrolysis Processing of Biofuels

The USDA-ARS FarmBio3 project explores whether on-farm fast-pyrolysis processing units could be a component of an efficient and cost-effective decentralized system of biofuel production and processing.

FarmBio3 mobile pyrolysis system travels among farms simulating the real-world scenario of multiple on-farm units that convert feedstocks to bio-oil, which is delivered to a regional biorefinery. Photo credit: USDA-ARS Pyrolysis Team.

Table of Contents

Biochar: Prospects of Commercialization

Learn all about biochar–what it is, and how it benefits soils and the climate by sequestering carbon.

Sponsoring Partner

Funded by AFRI. Learn More.

Table of Contents

What is Biochar?

Biochar is charred …

U.S. Billion-Ton Update Shows Farms and Forests Have Huge Potential for U.S. Bioenergy Future

U.S. farms and forests have the potential to supply enough biomass to meet the Renewable Fuels Standard and replace more than a third of petroleum use with bioenergy by 2030, according to the U.S. Billion-Ton Update


Table of Contents

NASA Earth Observatory: Where The Trees Are. Photo:
NASA Earth Observatory: Where The Trees Are. Photo: Wikipedia.

Resources from NEWBio: The Northeast Woody/Warm-season Biomass Consortium

NEWBio logo

Funded by AFRI. Learn More.

    The Northeast Woody/Warm-season Biomass Consortium (NEWBio) is a regional network of universities, businesses, and governmental organizations dedicated to building robust, scalable, and sustainable value chains for biomass energy in the Northeast. Driven by the broad societal benefits that sustainable bioenergy value chains could provide, NEWBio aims to overcome existing barriers and dramatically increase the sustainable, cost-effective supply of lignocellulosic biomass while reducing net greenhouse gas emissions, enhancing ecosystem services, and building vibrant communities.



    Ask an Expert logo