Research Project Information

Research Project Summary Information

Establishing Hybrid Willow Biomass for Renewable Electricity (ST10553-1)

Double A Vineyards, Inc.


Double A Willow has developed a business based on supplying the renewable energy industry in New York State (NYS) and the region with hybrid willow feedstock to be used in combined heat and power (CHP) facilities. The ultimate goal of Double A is to produce electricity from the willow grown on 1.2 million acres of land in NYS. This would produce the willow needed to supply 889 MW of electricity generated from plants located across upstate NY.

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Project Description

The goal was to allow Double A Willow to achieve the large scale commercialization of shrub willow as a source of biomass for electrical energy producers and heat consumers in CHP facilities.


The issue of adequate biomass supply is critical to the future of the biopower industry. It is currently a serious bottleneck, and NYS will not meet its biomass goals without a biocrop such as willows to add to forest and agricultural residue supplies. Woody biomass crops are sustainable, perennial in nature, have extensive root systems, and provide protection and enhancement of soil and water resources, as well as production of electricity with no net addition of carbon dioxide to the atmosphere. The overall strategy of this project was to create pull-through demand for willow biomass at the end user level. Double A Willow originally projected sales to three wood-fired power plants in NYS, four colleges/universities and three local or regional public schools or other state institutions within three years. It was hoped they would measure success by meeting the demands of at least two new major end users by the end of 2008, and enough potential end users identified to allow full scale ramp up to 1.2 million acres of planted willows within 10 years.

Project Results

Double A is developing a business that will supply shrub willow cuttings (whips) to growers of biomass, who will, in turn, supply woody biomass feedstock to wood and coal-fueled electrical energy producers. Double A’s strategy would accommodate the abandoned and under-used farmland in many parts of NYS. NYSERDA funds supported tasks related to the major project objectives of efficient production systems mechanization (engineering report), development of business plan for expansion (completed business plan), sales and marketing plan implementation (completed sales plan), formation of strategic alliances (strategic alliance prospect list and memorandums of understanding), plus the completed final report.


Double A Vineyards, Inc.
10277 Christy Rd
Fredonia, NY 14063

Principle Investigator

Dennis Rak

Universities Involved


Project Type:

Business Development

Technologies Types:

Indigenous Resources

NYSERDA Contact Information

Judy Jarnefeld


R&D - Environment & Energy Res

Contract Details

Start Date: 1/11/2010
Project Status: Active
Contract Number: ST10553-1

Last Updated: 9/26/2014