Quincy Biomass Waste Facility Project Takes Aim at Green Biomass Challenges


Plumas Firesafe Council is spearheading a project to establish a biomass waste facility in Quincy, extending its reach to more towns in the county.

During a presentation to the Board of Supervisors on Tuesday morning, the project manager from the Firesafe Council outlined a comprehensive approach to address the county’s significant green biomass challenges.

The plant’s initial focus is on producing firewood, primarily for Portola. This is particularly crucial for Portola, which falls under a nonattainment zone, leading the city to actively reduce pollution and enhance air quality. By employing a kiln-dried process to manufacture the firewood, the end product ensures a cleaner burn, aiding Portola in meeting regulatory requirements. The facility is set to collaborate with Northern Sierra Air Quality, and any excess firewood will be made available to the community at a discounted rate for seniors and those with disabilities.

Utilizing air curtain incinerator technology, the plant has the capability to process ten tons of biomass, generating 300kW of electricity per hour, along with thermal energy used for production operations. The energy produced will be integrated back into the grid through PG&E. Additionally, this initiative will result in the creation of biochar, often referred to as “black gold.” The project manager highlighted that this byproduct could play a crucial role in restoring charred landscapes by enhancing erosion control and oxygen sequestering.
Quincy is designated as the pilot program site, and if successful, similar facilities are planned for other major towns, including Indian Falls, Portola, and Chester.

The grant process is already underway, and with building permits and environmental studies completed on time, the facility aims to be operational by the fall of this year or, at the latest, by spring 2025.