MU Biomass Boiler Expected to Reduce Coal Use by 25 Percent
COLUMBIA - MU's new biomass-fired boiler has been built and is currently undergoing testing. The new sustainable boiler was erected to replace one of the existing coal-fired boilers and is expected to be fully operational by the end of the year. The new boiler is the latest project in the campus' effort to become more sustainable, and it is expected to reduce MU's coal use by more than 25 percent.
The boiler uses wood residues from local milling and logging operations. Other sources such as crop residues and waste paper are also being considered to be tested and used in the future.
The new boiler will use more than 100 thousand tons of regionally-supplied biomass per year. Hank Stelzer, one of MU's forestry experts, said it is one of the largest sustainability projects by any university in the country.
Superintendent at MU's power plant, Gregg Coffin, said that when the other four coal-fired boilers the university operates reach the end of their lives, biomass will be considered to replace them as well.