What does success look like in wood heat? Dots. Lots of colored dots. That’s what struck me as I mapped our wood heat projects and associated infrastructure as a way to literally see where our work has made a difference.  Even though my map was not comprehensive, it easily showed the growing density of the necessary ingredients for switching the region from oil to wood pellet heating. There are more pellet boiler manufacturers, more qualified installers, more bulk delivery services, and more boiler installations than ever before, especially in northern New Hampshire and western Maine where the Center has been most active. Here’s a deeper look at how we’re approaching this major shift to heating with a local, renewable resource.

While stories are getting around northern New England about a shortage of bagged wood pellets at home supply stores, homeowners who get bulk pellet delivery through the Model Neighborhood Project are not experiencing any supply problems.

Everyone can sympathize with the folks who are unable to get the pellets they need for conventional pellet stoves, but since the Northern Forest Center promotes the use of highly efficient, automated wood pellet boilers, we want to make it clear to the homeowners we work with and others considering switching from oil to wood pellets that they don’t need to worry about staying warm!

Tappan Chairs is in the midst of a revival in the town of Sandwich, New Hampshire, and the new owner, Adam Nudd-Homeyer, successfully raised seed funding online through the crowd-funding tool Kickstarter.com for new equipment and marketing. Founded in 1819, by Abraham Tappan, the company produces ladder-back chairs with hand-woven seats using some of the many pieces of original equipment that date back to the 19th century. In a time when many of our traditional furniture industry players have departed, Adam’s campaign is inspiring. Turns out, I' m not the only one who thinks so either...

Beginning this Fall and continuing through 2014, the Northern Forest Center is sponsoring a series of articles in Northern Woodlands magazine that captures success stories of innovation occurring in the region’s wood products manufacturing industry through the help of the Regional Wood Products Consortium.