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Countdown to the National Wood Fuel Conference

Sustainability is emerging as a key theme for speakers at this year’s National Wood Fuel Conference which will take place on Thursday 15 October at Epsom Downs Racecourse, Surrey.

With new sustainability criteria for Renewable Heat Incentive grants coming into force on 5 October, speakers from the Forestry Commission and the Woodsure certification scheme, will be taking a topical look at the impact of these changes on the wood fuel sector.

The conference programme also highlights the breadth of the biomass industry, with speakers from the UK District Energy Association on district heating systems and Entrade, manufacturers of the recently launched world’s smallest biomass power plant. Chris Miles, Senior Advisor at the Renewable Energy Association will open the conference with a presentation on building a long-term policy strategy for biomass heating. New entrants to the sector will find case studies from new installations at Highfield School and Birtley House, of particular interest.

Support for sector growth will be outlined in a presentation by Forestry Commission Director South East and London, Alison Field, with a look at opportunities for funding via Local Enterprise Partnerships and other grant options as well as commercial investment. The conference will also be highlighting opportunities the wood fuel sector offers to landowners and the private forestry sector, with speakers from the CLA, Forestry Commission and Nicholson Nurseries.

Organised by Surrey Hills Enterprises in association with Grown in Britain and the CLA, the one-day conference is sponsored by LC Energy, Surrey County Council and the Forestry Commission. The venue is the Duchess’s Stand at Epsom Downs Racecourse, with its purpose built conference facilities and free parking for delegates.

The conference will run from 8.00am – 4.30pm and features round table breakout sessions as well as speaker presentations. Delegates will also be able to benefit from an on-site exhibition featuring a range of suppliers to the wood fuel industry. The cost is £115 for the day which includes lunch.

Matthew Woodcock at the Forestry Commission in SEE said, “The woodfuel industry has come a long way in the last 10 years, yet the opportunities for further growth are huge. Woodfuel is an integrated industry where all elements in the ‘wood to heat’ supply chain must pull together for success. This year’s event provides an opportunity for the sector to share knowledge and explore how we can grasp the opportunities.”

For more information or to book a place at the conference or exhibition space, please visit our National Wood Fuel Conference pages.

The National Wood Fuel Conference Programme

Thursday 15 October 2015, Epsom Downs Racecourse, Surrey
08:00Registration, Refreshments and Trade Exhibition
09:15Welcome by the Conference Chairman
Dougal Driver, CEO, Grown in Britain
09:20Government Policy for Biomass and the RHI
Chris Miles, Senior Advisor, REA
09:40Funding Support for Woods and Wood Fuel
Alison Field, SE Director, Forestry Commission
10:00District Heating
Simon Woodward, Chairman, ukDEA
10:20Biomass at Highfield School
Bill Mills, Chairman, Highfield School, Surrey
10:40The World's Smallest Biomass CHP
Felix Ertl, Director of Sales, Entrade
11.00Comfort Break
11.20Sustainability of Forest Resources
Ian Tubby, Principal Adviser for Business & Markets, Forestry Commission
11.40Landowner Opportunities
Robin Edwards, Director South East, CLA
12.00Private Forestry Sector Opportunities
Niel Nicholson, Nicholson’s Forestry
12.20Sustainability requirements in the RO, Domestic RHI and Non-Domestic RHI
Nicola Percival, Policy Manager, Non-Domestic RHI, Ofgem
12.40Conference Summary
Mark Lebus, CEO, LC Energy
12.45Lunch, Networking and Trade Exhibition
Trade Exhibitors:
Charles Russell Speechlys Law Firm
Forestry Commission
LC Energy & Ecolyf
Natural England
Spanner RE GmbH
Surrey Hills Enterprises
The Woodland Trust
Verdo Renewables
Wilkins Kennedy
14.00Q&A Panel Discussion
Chaired by Dougal Driver, CEO, Grown in Britain
14.30Expert Surgeries:
Table 1
Case Studies in Wood Fuel
Simon Whalley, Chairman of the Birtley House Group Ltd
Bill Mills, Chairman, Highfield School, Surrey
Lucy Clark, LC Energy
Table 2
ESIF Funding for Wood Fuel Supply Chains - Who, What, How?
Chris Quintana, EM3 Local Enterprise Partnership
Table 3
Funding Projects
C2C Local Enterprise Partnership
Table 4
What’s Taxing You about Woodland Ownership?
Jonathan Thompson, Sally Ashford & Iwan Williams, Charles Russell Speechlys Law Firm
Table 5
Sustainability Criteria
Ian Tubby, Principal Adviser for Business & Markets, Forestry Commission
Helen Bentley-Fox, Technical Advisor, BSL
Jessica Tull, Administrator, BSL