Thinking Green

Arborwell is Thinking Green

Through Arborwell’s wood chip recycling program, we generate enough clean energy to power an average of 330 three-bedroom houses every year.

Tree work creates a significant amount of biomass – limbs, logs and brush. We send the buiomass through a chipper to turn it into wood chips. Between five and ten truckloads of wood chips are transported on a weekly basis from Arborwell yards to a biomass plant. Once the chips arrive at the plant, they are dumped into large hoppers and fed into a furnace where they are burned. The fire heats water in a boiler, and the resulting steam is used to turn turbines and generators. All of the power that is created is sent directly into the state’s power grid.

How clean is biomass energy?

Burning biomass creates what experts call a “net gain of zero”. The small amount of emissions generated during biomass burning are offset by the amount of carbon dioxide that was absorbed by the biomass while it was growing. Biomass power plants diligently work to ensure that emissions are kept to the absolute minimum. Various treatments are injected during the burning process in order to control levels of pollutants such as sulfur. Biomass plants have monitors that are tied into the local air district offices so that emissions can be controlled and monitored by the state.

Using biomass is environmentally friendly

Biomass power plants not only recycle waste materials and generate renewable energy; they also significantly help to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and offset fossil fuels. If biomass is not transported to a biomass power plant, it is often left to be open-air burned or sent to a landfill. These alternate modes of biomass disposal emit substantially higher levels of greenhouse gases like carbon dioxide and methane. In fact, it has been concluded that close to a ton of carbon dioxide emissions are saved for every 100 kilowatt hours of energy that are produced out of a biomass plant.

Want to learn more about biomass energy? Visit the California Biomass Energy Alliance’s website at

Arborwell Can Help You Think Green Too

Taking care of your trees helps you conserve energy, save money, and ensure the safety of those around you. Click on the Tree Assessment Request Form below to get in contact with one of our Certified Arborists and learn how tree care can help you live greener.

in a Profile Series on the Discovery Channel that will discuss arboriculture and its important role in environmental stewardship.

Tree Assessment Request Form

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