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Kurt Mackes, Colorado State University, kmackes@warnercnr.colostate.edu (Presenter)

 

In Colorado and the Rocky Mountain Region, poor forest health and conditions that are favorable for catastrophic wildfires are of serious concern. To address these issues, it will be necessary to mechanically remove large quantities of forest biomass. The question of what to do with forest biomass once it is removed continues to be a challenge and lack of utilization options has become a barrier to implementing management projects in the region on a landscape scale that promote forest health and reduce fire risks. In response to this challenge, the Colorado Wood Program (CoWood) developed a biomass short course to provide both education and a forum that brings attendees together to discuss the challenges associated with biomass utilization. This presentation will summarize course development over the past 5 years, including the evolution of course objectives, content, and outcomes. A summary of course objectives will show that there has been a focus on addressing challenges to biomass utilization. It will also reveal that course content selection has been done to assist forestland managers with biomass utilization alternatives to help promote positive outcomes for forest management projects designed to improve forest health and reduce catastrophic fire risks.