McGarvey wins competitive grant for biomass research

Ronald McGarvey

The National Institute of Food and Agriculture at the U.S. Department of Agriculture recently awarded the University of Missouri a three-year competitive grant for nearly $500,000 to support ongoing interdisciplinary research on energy derived from woody biomass, or wood energy. Woody biomass is a major source of renewable energy in the United States.

Dr. Ronald McGarvey and Dr. Francisco Aguilar will conduct a study to determine the socioeconomic and environmental implications of the growth in woody biomass use for biopower. This research will provide regulators and industry information they need in order to support expansion of renewable generation and potentially reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

Specifically, the study will evaluate the impact on land and forest resources surrounding power plants using wood as a biopower feedstock; determine regional economic impacts of adoption of wood energy-based biopower systems; and quantify tradeoffs between cost, greenhouse gas reductions, and renewable energy generation obtained by increased use of wood energy for biopower.

McGarvey is an assistant professor of industrial and manufacturing systems engineering and of public affairs in the MU College of Engineering and Truman School of Public Affairs. Aguilar is an associate professor of forestry in the MU School of Natural Resources.