By pretending that cutting and burning whole trees doesn’t add carbon to the atmosphere, the newly watered-down Massachusetts regulations claim the legitimacy of being “based on Manomet” - while ignoring that study’s key finding.
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Taxpayers and ratepayers should not have to pay extra for “renewable” energy that accelerates forest cutting, increases greenhouse gas emissions, and pollutes the air.
It’s a measure of how pervasive the “biomass benefits climate” myth has become that even the well-respected Climate Progress blog, edited by the great Joe Romm, seems to have bought into the propaganda.
The American Lung Association does not support biomass combustion for electricity production...and strongly opposes the combustion of wood and other biomass sources at schools and institutions with vulnerable populations.
What the NH biomass plant operators know, and what their statements demonstrate, is that biomass fuel is getting scarce and costly, the biomass industry is heavily dependent on subsidies, and that pollution controls can be prohibitively expensive.
Farmers are paid $80 - $85 per ton of corn stover for use as ethanol feedstock, much of that from federal subsidies.
The dependency of the biomass industry on taxpayer dollars from BCAP demonstrates that biomass energy isn’t even close to being a truly renewable energy source like wind and solar. Once wind and solar infrastructure is in place, the “fuel” is delivered free – forever.
Packaging Corporation of America worries that the 50 MW We Energies biomass plant will result in unforeseen forest management impacts, including clearcutting of northern hardwood stands for whole tree chips.
Want to know what toxins you’re breathing? Easy visualization from the National Air Toxics Assessment
Using the Google Earth maps allowed us to see that census tracts surrounding the proposed Palmer Renewable Energy biomass plant in Springfield MA already have the highest combined respiratory and cancer risk in Western Massachusetts.
April 12 was a “hazardous” day for air quality in western Massachusetts, yet it's full speed ahead for the Palmer Renewable Energy plant in Springfield, which will be one of the largest emitters of particle pollution in the region.
It’s been an article of faith with many in Congress that everything from Godzilla (nukes) to unicorns (coal with carbon capture) belongs in a Clean Energy Standard. We’re so grateful to find Republicans that acknowledge that reducing greenhouse gas emissions is a worthy goal, we figured we’d play along, and submit our comments on why biomass doesn’t belong in a Clean Energy Standard.
Health organizations, and the American people, tell Congress to stop legislating science and stop weakening one of the preeminent public health laws in the U.S.
Power companies in Ohio have set their sights on burning trees for electricity as a way to get a few more years out of their oldest and dirtiest coal-fired power plants. Ohio has included “trees” in its definition of renewable energy sources. Wood demand to generate the 2,100 megawatts of "renewable" power certified by the State would require nearly 30 million tons of trees per year.
Many public officials don’t seem to recognize the threat that large-scale biomass plants and wood pellet manufacturing plants present to the State’s forests.
The Manomet study relies on a number of assumptions that minimize the calculation of net carbon emissions from biomass, meaning that actual emissions are likely significantly greater than the study concludes.
Acting as if the carbon emitted from trees cut and burned here will be sequestered by trees over there makes as much sense as letting a coal plant write off its emissions because it’s not cutting trees over there, either.