Hurricane Katrina Forest Recovery

As we work together to tackle the historic challenge that Hurricane Katrina has presented to the forestry communities of Mississippi, Louisiana, and Alabama, we hope that this blog will be a valuable resource and tool.

Monday, December 5

Katrina Organics/Biomass Summit -- Jackson, MS -- December 6-7, 2005

The debris stream from Hurricane Katrina in the three Mississippi coastal counties consists of 65% structural debris and 35% vegetative/timber debris. Inland of the three coastal counties, the debris mix consists of 90% vegetative/timber debris and 10% structural debris (FEMA/USACE estimates). Katrina was still rated a Category I hurricane well over 100 miles inland of the coast and decimated much of the State’s southern forest lands. Initial estimates placed the volume of damaged timber in MS from Katrina at approximately 25% of the annual U.S. production, or approximately 19 billion board feet. There are many reasons to recover this organic material and to do so as expeditiously as possible, not the least of which is the need to minimize the environmental threat of catastrophic forest fires in the near future.

Tuesday, 12/6/05:
8:30 to 9:00 am
Welcome and Orientation (State Agencies, EPA)

9:00 to 9:30 am
Introductions (All)- Name; title; affiliation; brief background of biomass/organic materials expertise; summation of involvement with disaster debris

9:30 to 9:45 am
Ground rules (Facilitator)

9:45 to 10:30 am
Overview of Situation (State Agencies)

10:30 am to Lunch
(Full Group) - Consensus on break-out group focus areas; appointment of leader to re-state issue(s) for each break-out group and notetakers

Lunch (1-hour)
Break-out groups - Initial Assignment: Identify issues, potential solutions, obstacles & challenges, potential participants needed in future workgroups
Full group review & comment on break-out groups' Initial Assignment
Alternate: break-out group sessions and full group session, as needed to accomplish subsequent assignments

5:50 to 6:00 pm
Full Group - Plan for Wednesday (Facilitator)
6:00 pm - End Day 1

Wednesday, 12/7/05:
8:00 to 8:15 am
Full Group - Review today's plan and assignments for break-out groups
Alternate: break-out group sessions and full group session, as needed to accomplish assignments

Lunch (1 hour)
Post Lunch:
Alternate: break-out group sessions and full group session, as needed to accomplish assignments

4:00 to 5:30 pm
Full Group - Final presentations by break-out groups Identify post-Summit workgroup leaders (State) and co-leaders (State and/or other) Prioritize follow-up items (Facilitator) Logistics for Thursday's site visits (All who are planning to

5:30 pm - End Day 2
Thursday, 12/8/05:
8:00 am (or earlier) - Depart Jameson Inn for southern Mississippi organic debris processing site visits
INITIAL PRIMARY TOPICS FOR BREAK-OUT GROUPS (to be refined Tuesday morning as necessary)

economics (jobs, revenues, private landowner assistance, funding
mechanisms, contractual issues, etc.)
energy (end uses; technologies, feasibility, practicality,
sustainability, etc.)
land application/composting (end uses; infrastructure,
sustainability, etc.)
regulatory (initial group to identify 'laundry list' of potential
regulations involved with organics/biomass issues; may then disband
this group to merge into other break-out groups as Summit proceeds)
other - TBD


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