The word Biomass typically means any plant matter that can be used to generate electricity or produce heat, most often by direct combustion, but also by gasification and other more sophisticated processes. Examples of biomass include: forest residues (sawdust, branches, tree stumps), agricultural waste (rice husks, coconut shells, bagasse) and even municipal organic waste.
There are many benefits of using biomass to generate energy: If biomass is sourced from waste, then waste becomes a valuable resource rather than a problem, e.g. sawdust from saw mills frequently contributes to pollution, if not dealt with properly. If biomass can be sold by small farmers and land owners it provides a new source of income that helps to support the rural economy. If biomass is sourced from within a country, it can become an important contributor to reducing a country’s dependence on fossil fuel imports. And energy generated from biomass is almost carbon neutral.