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Conserv Launches Virginia Biomass Solutions

After months of preparations, Conserv has launched Virginia Biomass Solutions (VBS).  VBS fosters the economically, socially, and environmentally sustainable production and utilization of biomass in Virginia for food, fiber, energy, and environmental services. VBS is the next generation of biomass and bioenergy  programming originally developed by Public Policy of Virginia (PPV) over the last decade.

VBS is formed from the joint interests of PPV and Conserv.  PPV, the Commonwealth’s premier non-profit biomass energy organization, was founded to promote biofuels and create support for public policy that would engender affordable health care.  Over time, PPV’s focus began to include the concept of ecosystem-friendly biomass crops as feedstocks for distributed, community-scale heat and power generation and rural revitalization.  Between 2005 and the end of 2011 PPV earned its reputation with three principal programs, the Virginia Biomass Energy Group (VBEG), the Community Power Initiative (CPI), and the Virginia Alliance for a Better Renewable Energy Standard (VABRES).

VBEG was widely recognized for its networking role bringing together individuals and institutions across all sectors involved in bioenergy.  CPI was PPV’s research and education branch, focusing on the logistics of feedstock supply systems and small-scale energy generation.  Through VABRES, a broad based coalition of renewable energy advocates, PPV was the standard bearer for a sensible renewable energy policy in Virginia.

In the summer of 2012 the Conserv Board of Directors acquired control of PPV and increased the size of their Board of Directors by several fold.  A significant proportion of the expertise of this new 2012 class of Conserv Directors is in the biomass arena and as of August, 2012 includes:

John English – English Boiler and Tube

Fred Circle – FDC Enterprises, Inc.

Dr. Charles Cushwa – FDC Enterprises and The Wildlife Consulting Group

Chandler Van Voorhis – C2I and Green Trees

Al Weed – Mountain Cove Vineyard and Former Executive Director, Public Policy of Virginia

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