Community Buildings

All Souls Interfaith Gathering

A Sanctuary's Modest Pellet Boiler Will Help Test Local Field Grasses

The handsome sanctuary of the All Souls Interfaith Gathering, an ecumenical worship and meditation center in Shelburne, Vermont, is surrounded by gently rolling fields and woods that slope to the shore of nearby Lake Champlain. If a current experiment goes well, those fields may soon supply fuel for the biomass hot-water boiler that heats the sanctuary—and that could help to open up new vistas for locally produced biomass fuel...

Lambach Abbey

A Wood-Heating Tradition of 900 Years Is Modernized at an Austrian Monastery

When natural gas service reached the market town of Lambach in Upper Austria in 1996, local homeowners stopped burning wood. That meant they also stopped buying their firewood from historic Lambach Abbey, a monastery that had been harvesting wood from its own forests for more than 900 years...

Long Lake Conservation Center

A Simple System with a Quarter-Century Service Record

The five GARN cordwood burners that power the campus heating system at Long Lake Conservation Center are robust exemplars of a key transition in the story of biomass energy. Three of the units have been working for a quarter century—and they embody the shift from old-fashioned woodstoves to far more powerful, clean-emission central units...

Municipal Aquatic Center and City School

Heating with Woodchips in a Wet Climate

What became Alaska’s first fully automated, woodchip-fired district heating system began as a sort of afterthought...

Wolf Ridge Environmental Education Center

A Place Where Wood Heat Is a Lesson in Itself

To a great many of the 17,000 people who visit the Wolf Ridge Environmental Learning Center in upper Minnesota each year, a biomass-fired campus heating system is part of the learning process...