Tulalip Tribes - 2003 Project

Project Overview
Tribe/Awardee: Tulalip Tribes
Location: Marysville, WA
Project Title: Feasibility Study of Biomass-Powered Renewable Energy Generation on Tribal Lands in Snohomish County, Washington
Type of Application: Feasibility
DOE Grant Number: DE-FC36-03GO13017
Project Amounts:
DOE: $256,476
Awardee: $53,357
Total: $309,833
Project Status: Complete  More
Project Period
of Performance:
Start: April 2003
End: December 2004

Summary

The Tulalip Tribes of Washington, a federally recognized Indian tribe, will assess the feasibility of developing biogas generation facilities to convert manure and other biomass resources into electricity to help meet the tribe's energy needs from a renewable energy source. Tulalip will research and report on how this type of development can improve water quality in Snohomish Watershed streams and rivers through improved treatment of manure and other biowaste products and possible water reuse from the facility.

Project Description

The Tulalip Tribes of Washington, a federally recognized Indian Tribe, will assess the feasibility of developing biogas generation facilities to convert manure and other biomass resources into electricity to help meet the Tribe's energy needs from a renewable energy source. Tulalip will research and report on how this type of development can improve water quality in Snohomish Watershed streams and rivers through improved treatment of manure and other bio-waste products and possible water reuse from the facility. Tulalip will explore using a biogas generation facility to supply heat to an anticipated Tribal nursery and greenhouse operation, and marketing of biogas facility byproducts as high-quality fertilizer and soil amendments. One idea is to brand the products as "salmon-friendly" and sell it at the Tribe's Home Depot-anchored shopping center on the Marysville, WA, Reservation.

Background

The Tulalip Tribes of Washington is located in Snohomish County, Washington, which is north of Seattle in the mid-Puget Sound area. The Reservation has several significant business enterprises, including a tribal casino and a large business park, in addition to supporting 3,500 residential and tribal administration buildings. The peak daily electric load of the reservation is 23 MW.

Snohomish County encompasses 2,090 square miles and has a population of 618,000 people. Snohomish is one of the fastest growing counties in Washington State. It also supports a large agricultural industry, with over 1,200 farms. The majority (63%) of Snohomish County dairy farms are registered with the Washington State Department of Ecology as Confined Animal Feeding Operations (CAFOs), and milk from 250 up to 1,800 cows per farm. Increasingly stringent land application regulations and new Federal CAFO regulations will limit manure disposal options for these farmers.

The Tribe sees a unique opportunity to assess the biomass resource base of Snohomish County, and look at the possibility of constructing a centralized biogas-generating facility on Tribal Lands. The Tribe sees value in addressing the biosolids management problem in the County, because it has been implicated in degradation of the salmon fisheries in the watershed. The Tribe has Treaty Rights in these fisheries and many tribal members depend on the salmon harvest for their livelihood. Moreover, salmon plays a significant cultural role in the Tulalip Tribe, and restoration of the wild salmon fisheries in one of the Tribe's highest priorities.

Objective

The Tribes will conduct a county-wide biomass resource assessment, tribal load assessment, transmission and interconnection analyses, economic and financial analyses, and evaluation of cost-effective biomass technologies-including advanced technologies-with the goal in mind of characterizing the resource, its energy potential, and documenting the environmental and tribal social, cultural, and economic benefits of such a project, if developed. At the end of the study, the Tribe and its consultant team will have created detailed recommendations for moving forward and, if feasibility is deemed suitable, a particular technology or technologies, and a strategy for implementation. The feasibility study will also result in a comprehensive business plan sufficient to obtain financing for the construction, development, and operation of the proposed biomass energy plant. Final approval for moving forward with financing will be dependent upon approval by Tribal leadership. An additional goal of the study is to not limit the work to technical, engineering, and scientific considerations, but to look at the social setting and cultural connections such a development might entail, and to build partnerships and coalitions of support for the implementation phase.

Scope and Approach

The overall statement of work has 13 basic task elements:

  1. Conduct biomass resource assessment

  2. Conduct tribal load assessment (including potential for off-takers of power)

  3. Review, consider, and assess transmission and interconnection considerations

  4. Conduct technology analysis and evaluation

  5. Conduct economic analysis

  6. Conduct environmental assessment

  7. Conduct tribal benefit assessment

  8. Develop preliminary system design

  9. Develop training and other Tribal capacity building

  10. Develop long term O & M plan

  11. Develop a business plan for financing, development, construction, and operation of the plant

  12. Obtain project implementation agreements for financing, power purchase, transmission and other interconnection issues, and obtain Tribal council resolution.

  13. Prepare reports and hold project review meetings.

Project Location

The Tulalip Tribes of Washington is located in Snohomish County, Washington, which is north of Seattle in the mid-Puget Sound area. The Reservation has several significant business enterprises, including a tribal casino and a large business park, in addition to supporting 3,500 residential and tribal administration buildings. Snohomish County encompasses 2,090 square miles.

Project Status

This project is complete. For more, see the project summary (MS Word 8.2 MB) and final report (PDF 2.8 MB). Download Adobe Reader.

The project was competitively selected under the Tribal Energy Program's FY2002 solicitation, "Renewable Energy Development on Tribal Lands" and started April 2003. The November 2003 (PDF 1.1 MB) and October 2004 (PDF 573 KB) presentations provide additional information. Download Adobe Reader.

For other information, contact one of the project contacts.

Project Contact

Daryl B. Williams, Environmental Liaison
Governmental Affairs Department
Tulalip Tribes of Washington
7615 Totem Beach Road
Marysville, WA 98271
Phone: (360) 651-4476
Fax: (360) 651-4490
Email: dwilliams@tulalip.nsn.us

David Wilbur, Office Administrator
Tulalip Tribes of Washington
7615 Totem Beach Road
Marysville, WA 98271
Phone: (360) 651-4473
Fax: (360) 651-4490
Email: dwilbur@tulalip.nsn.us

Ray Clark, Clark Group
503 Capitol Court, NE #200
Washington, DC 20002
Phone: (202) 544-8200
Fax: (202) 544-8330
Email: rayclark@clarkgroupllc.com