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Biomass Emits Double The CO2 Of Gas

February 26, 2015

By Paul Homewood 





As we all know, burning coal and gas to produce electricity is BAD, but burning wood is GOOD.

But what do the actual figures tell us?

I asked DECC to supply comparative figures CO2 produced/MWh, for coal, gas and biomass (specifically wood pellets). I specifically requested that the biomass figures should purely relate to emissions from the power stations, and not to include “whole life” calculations. This was their reply:


1) We have identified a calculation of the biologically derived CO2 emitted from a typical power station converted to biomass combustion. The calculation assumed that 47% of the dry weight of the wood pellet is carbon and that large biomass conversions are typically 35.5% efficient at converting the energy content of the wood pellets into electricity.
These assumptions would need to be amended for specific biomass fuels, and power station operating conditions. Also the value below is higher than the true value of CO2 emissions as no allowance was made for the carbon retained in the ash at the power station.

The value calculated was 920 kg CO2/MWh of electricity generated.

We do not routinely estimate the emissions of biogenic carbon dioxide (CO2) from combustion of wood pellets when calculating the national emissions total. In reporting emissions the UK follows the requirements of IPCC guidelines on International Greenhouse Gas reporting. In order to avoid double counting of emissions and removals, the reporting convention is that the CO2 contained within biological materials, such as wood pellets, which are to be burnt for energy purposes, such as electricity generation, is accounted for by the harvesting country. This emission is reported by countries included under the forest management sector.

2) The quantity of CO2 emitted by fuel use in the pellet making process depends on a range of factors such as how the fuels are used to dry the biomass before pelletisation. As examples;

• saw mill offcuts require no additional drying before pelletisation,
• natural forest-side drying can reduce timber moisture content from 50% to 25% without requiring energy,
• the CO2 released in generating the electricity used in pelletising will normally have the typical CO2 impact of the electricity network of the country in which it is located.

3) The BEAC report and spreadsheet referred to above contain values for the comparable emissions of carbon dioxide from typical coal and natural gas fired power stations of 1018 and 437 kg CO2 equivalent/ MWh electricity generated respectively.


So, on a straight comparison, we get:




Coal 1018
Gas 437
Bio 920

While bio is slightly better than coal, it is emitting more than double the CO2 of gas.

None of these figures account for the emissions involved in processing or transporting wood pellets. Equally of course, they don’t include these for fossil fuels, although it seems reasonable that the add on emissions for gas would not be as great.


The only logic to biomass is that forests are replanted to compensate for the extra CO2 produced, but, even if this is true, it would take decades to happen.

In any event, if the forests were left where they were, how much CO2 would simply have been sequestrated into the soil? Or if the wood had been used for other purposes, such as building material, there would be no extra emissions at all.

Given that we are supposed to only have a few years left to save the planet, would it not be more sensible to be burning gas?

The only conclusion is that the whole biomass farrago has been no more than a gimmick, with a veneer of “sustainability”. The clue lies in DECC’s statement:

In reporting emissions the UK follows the requirements of IPCC guidelines on International Greenhouse Gas reporting. In order to avoid double counting of emissions and removals, the reporting convention is that the CO2 contained within biological materials, such as wood pellets, which are to be burnt for energy purposes, such as electricity generation, is accounted for by the harvesting country. This emission is reported by countries included under the forest management sector.


In other words, you can burn as many trees as you like, as long as they are not your own. Without this edict, biomass would be dead in the water.

  1. February 26, 2015 8:16 am

    Assuming that the biomass being burnt comes from 50 year old trees; Has anyone done the calculation for the area of forest which will be cut and replanted during the next 50 years? During those 50 years the CO2 from during the wood will have been recovered for year 1, But all other years will have entered the atmosphere “permanently”.

  2. February 26, 2015 8:21 am

    Unless you believe CO2 causes temperatures to rise, why would you care how much CO2 is released into the atmosphere – it’s good for plants remember.

    And if you do believe CO2 causes temperatures to rise how come they haven’t risen for last 18 years or so?

    • AndyG55 permalink
      February 26, 2015 9:20 am

      “why would you care how much CO2 is released into the atmosphere”

      But I DO care !!

      We desperately need to push up the CO2 level from the dangerously low levels of the past many thousands of year, 700ppm plus at absolute minimum.

      The very best way to do this is to release as much as possible of the untimely sequestered carbon that is now coal.

      All that WASTED, life giving carbon.., buried… the Earth NEEDS it …. NOW !

    • johnmarshall permalink
      February 26, 2015 12:08 pm

      Exactly, if CO2 was as magical as claimed it would be used in double glazing units instead of nitrogen.

    • Jamie McIvor permalink
      May 16, 2016 11:55 am

    • Michael Dean permalink
      December 21, 2016 3:28 pm

      “Belief” has nothing to do with the greenhouse effect. It is a PROVEN (not a work science throws around much) phenomenon. I can test it in middle school science lab. So unless you are prepared to deny “water=H2O” I would suggest dropping that line of argument…

  3. AndyG55 permalink
    February 26, 2015 9:21 am

    “Biomass Emits Double The CO2 Of Gas”

    GOOD !!!!!!!!!

  4. igsy permalink
    February 26, 2015 9:56 am

    You can even find this lunacy addressed in the Grauniad, without the “den!er” word to boot, that’s how bad it is.

    For example:

    “We’re paying people to cut their forests down in the name of reducing greenhouse gas emissions, and yet we are actually increasing them. No-one is apparently bothering to do any analysis about this,” one Brussels insider told EurActiv.

    “They’re just sleepwalking into this insanity,” he added.

  5. February 26, 2015 10:05 am

    I think it has to do with the UK target for renewables, which all parties seem to worship with religious fervour, coupled with fear of a Green Zombie Apocalypse if they dare to question it.

    I suggest a law that makes the first power cuts apply to the constituency of the minister in charge.

  6. February 26, 2015 10:05 am

    “The only logic to biomass is that forests are replanted to compensate for the extra CO2 produced, but, even if this is true, it would take decades to happen.”

    But it is a lot quicker than it would be for gas! The replanted biomass doesn’t “compensate” for the emitted CO2, it actually takes CO2 out of the atmosphere.

    In theory, biomass is a renewable energy source, *if* all of the biomass used could be regrown within a sustainable period.

    I think it is pointless arguing against burning biomass on the grounds that it emits CO2.
    The important thing is whether burning it at a sustainable level would meet our energy needs, i.e. is there enough land on the planet to grow all of the biomass we would need.

    This I doubt very much.

    • February 26, 2015 12:30 pm

      A lot depends on whether the forest is actually ever replanted, and what the wood would have been used otherwise.

      • silverfox permalink
        February 26, 2015 2:57 pm

        Typically the American timber being felled to supply plants such as Drax is from diversified mature forest.
        If, as you say, it is ever replanted, it is unlikely to replicate the aforesaid diversity. It will no doubt be plantationed.
        No regard is given to the destruction of other biodiversive ecologies which also depend upon the forest.

      • February 26, 2015 3:02 pm

        Paul, southern (US) pine forests have been cut and planted since about 1940. I am certain about replanting 50-60 years ago because I did it. It takes about 25-40 years to get usable loblolly pines if you do forest management practices. It’s a business by individual farmers and the large wood and paper products companies.

        The claims by the pellet companies (Enviva) is that they use wood that can’t be used such as trees that aren’t marketable, tops, bark, trimming and the like. One claim is that the pellet process makes a clear cut easier to replant.

        The enviros claim that the GHG emissions from the pellets are 120% of coal, but no data.

        With your estimates of GHG emissions, coal and wood pellets are a wash, so there is no real environmental advantage. A coals to Newcastle deal?

      • emsnews permalink
        February 28, 2015 12:17 am

        By clearing all the excess byproduct, they are making woods weaker, poorer.

        This is robbing the future, big time. I own a forest and when I fell the bigger trees, I leave behind lots of overstory material (branches/leaves/other tree parts) to rot and enrich the forest in the future.

        The cutting down of huge tracts of trees and planting saplings in the weakened soil is NOT WORKING.

  7. johnmarshall permalink
    February 26, 2015 12:10 pm

    Biomas growing doubled the cost of food so giving the developing countries a problem feeding their people.

  8. tom0mason permalink
    February 26, 2015 12:23 pm

    Biomass Emits Double The CO2 Of Gas…

    Meanwhile back at the Department, the preening has started –

    “…and unlike coal, biomass is deemed sustainable.
    So it’s a win-win-win all round sir. More sustainable biomass, making more sustainable energy, making more sustainable CO2 and more sustainable ash.
    Well done minister…”

  9. William Abbott permalink
    February 26, 2015 1:30 pm

    Biomass is wildly uneconomical. At Curtis Nebraska, the College of Technical Agriculture, recently installed a high efficiency biomass boiler for heating the campus. In the feasibility study, the boiler broke even after forty years on assumptions the price of natural gas would be more than $13 a Therm, and the juniper wood chips would could $35 a ton.

    Now its finished – Gas here for an institutional user like a college runs well under $5 a Therm, and the chips will cost more than $70. Yep – they are firing it up. They built it, they got to use it. Biomass CO2 is recently sequestered, as opposed to the anciently sequestered carbon in gas. So creating twice the atmospheric CO2 at what, ten times the cost?, is good for getting rid of cedar trees, but would be otherwise laughable if it weren’t all being paid for with tax dollars.

  10. February 26, 2015 2:38 pm

    Ed Davey is a moron.

    That is all.

  11. February 26, 2015 2:41 pm

    Okay, I don’t think I understand the argument here. The amount of CO2 emitted is not exactly what the AGW/CAGW theory counts. Yes, they do measure total CO2 in the atmosphere. However, only the fossil fuel emmissions are considered to change the “natural” balance because this CO2 was long sequestered and is being suddenly released at a rate nature cannot do. So, even if biomass does release more CO2, other than a very slight increase in CO2 in the atmosphere, it does not add to the human side of the equation. I am not saying I agree with this, I am saying this is their argument and that is not being addressed here. Frequently I see people making this argument, along with “you can’t breathe out” etc. In reality, you’re helping the AGW crown prove that skeptics do not understand the science and theories of AGW. (If you want to talk about whether the fossil fuel CO2 added is a crisis or not, that’s a totally different question.)

    • February 26, 2015 8:57 pm

      I understand the sequestered CO2 in biomass is temporarily sequestered and will be recycled into the atmosphere when plant matter decays. I understand that new plant growth will sequester atmospheric CO2. What I don’t get is; why accelerating the release of CO2 into the atmosphere doesn’t count? If sequestered CO2 is released fifty years early it doesn’t count? Doesn’t the ppm count on atmosphericCO2 increase at the point of combustion.

      • February 26, 2015 9:12 pm

        Doug explains below, and does it very well. Carbon sequestered in fossil fuels is part of a centuries long cycle for carbon. Trees are not. They are short-term. This is the theory. If you want to attack the theory scientifically and explain why the cycles and release mechanisms are wrong or why the CO2 sudden release is catastrophic or not, that’s fine. But the theory is not that all CO2 we put in the atmosphere is “bad”.

      • AndyG55 permalink
        February 27, 2015 1:06 am

        Coal use adds to the carbon availability in the short term carbon cycle,

        Biomass doesn’t.

        Adding carbon back into the shorter term cycle is GOOD for all life on Earth.

        Do you understand ????

  12. February 26, 2015 4:05 pm

    Reblogged this on Tallbloke's Talkshop and commented:

  13. Doug Proctor permalink
    February 26, 2015 4:57 pm

    Since the biomass CO2 came from and returned to the atmosphere, biomass is fundamentally zero-additive. The net increase is in planting, harvesting, processing and transportation to the furnace. Fossil fuel CO2 is 100% new to the atmosphere PLUS has additions from access, processing and transportation.

    Your emissions statistics article a red herring. Which you know.

    The politicization of CAGW is so bad that nobody should accept without deep scrutiny anything either side says. Winning supporters period, has become the goal, not gaining supporters by appealing to reasoning based on fact.

    • February 26, 2015 6:05 pm

      Hydrocarbons sequester CO2. So-called fossil fuels and grass contain sequestered CO2. How can you say fossil fuel CO2 is 100% new to the atmosphere? It is a question of time. Biomass will release the sequestered CO2 into the atmosphere eventually if we do nothing. (Unless it becomes peat) The sequestered Atmospheric CO2 in so called fossil fuels will be released in the future back into atmosphere at an unknown time and manner.

      I think you got a lot of damn gall to tell Paul Homewood that the emissions statistics in this article is a red herring. The undisputed truth is you are releasing twice as much sequestered CO2 into the atmosphere when you burn biomass instead of gas. It is counter-productive to burn biomass instead of gas if your goal is to reduce atmospheric CO2.

      This is science Doug. Not politics. I know science is hard. You will just have to try to understand.

    • February 26, 2015 6:41 pm


      It is simply not as black and white as you make out.

      For instance, this study showed that if whole trees are used, even on a whole life cycle basis, CO2 emissions from bio would be 49% greater than coal after 40 yrs, and only 14% less after 100 yrs.

      Click to access Searchinger_comments_on_bioenergy_strategy_SEPT_2012_tcm9-329780.pdf

    • February 26, 2015 6:45 pm

      And then there was this report from DECC last year that said

      Burning wood to fuel power stations can create as many harmful carbon emissions as burning coal

  14. outtheback permalink
    February 26, 2015 5:43 pm

    Doug, that is a numbers game.
    What you are saying, if I understand it correct, is that it is better to burn wood that produces twice the amount of CO2 then gas as it is “neutral”.
    We do not have to burn the wood, we can burn gas. We can use the timber for other purposes where it does not get burned and therefore does not create twice as much CO2 as gas for the same unit of electricity. Or we can leave the tree being the tree and absorb more CO2. One way or the other the argument of the neutral statement does not stack up.
    This is the same as saying that when you can buy something at half the price with inherited money it is worse then paying double for the same item with money you have earned by working as you can replace it and is therefore “neutral”. One way or the other you paid twice as much as you could have. And if you accept the CO2 warming theory then with burning biomass we are paying twice as much as we need to, warming the planet at twice the rate.
    It would be totally different if these trees would get burned regardless out in the open, and while there are natural forest fires which have been happening since before Adam was a boy, the only non natural burning of trees on any scale is deforestation. By all means use those to produce electricity if that timber is no good for anything else. But to grow trees for electricity costs us twice as much in CO2 output. (not looking at other CO2 costs of harvesting/pumping, processing and getting it to the market, timber or gas)

    • February 26, 2015 6:16 pm

      Again, the trees and their CO2 do not count. Only fossil fuels.

      • AndyG55 permalink
        February 26, 2015 8:25 pm

        All we are doing by using fossil fuels is bringing carbon that used to be in the system, and was accidentally removed from the atmospheric carbon cycle, BACK INTO that carbon cycle.

        We are putting the Carbon back WHERE IT BELONGS .

      • February 26, 2015 8:29 pm

        “Where it belongs”? That makes no sense. It was certainly not “accidentally” removed from the atmospheric carbon cycle. That’s so unscientific, I have no response. Wow.

      • AndyG55 permalink
        February 26, 2015 9:09 pm

        Oh, so you think that all those trees, that are now coal, got buried on purpose. ?

        Interesting. !

      • AndyG55 permalink
        February 26, 2015 9:11 pm

        Or perhaps you think those trees that are now coal were never part of the atmospheric carbon cycle?

        How very odd, and unscientific.

      • February 26, 2015 9:22 pm

        So here you do seem to know that the trees are part of the carbon cycle whether they are coal or not. It appears to be you don’t understand that the carbon cycle has different time lines for sequestration of the CO2. That is important when looking at the whole cycle.
        I have no idea why you are saying I think all those trees got buried on purpose. Trees have no ability to get buried on purpose. Their getting buried was as much an “accident” as any natural process, so I don’t understand the “accident” part. There is no “on purpose” or “by accident” involved in this.

      • AndyG55 permalink
        February 26, 2015 9:28 pm

        If you lock up $1m in gold in a buried chest for a long period, it is “out of circulation”, it is not contributing.

        Then you dig it up and put it back into circulation, so it can contribute.

        That is reality.

      • AndyG55 permalink
        February 26, 2015 9:32 pm

        Oh I get it, you seem to think that coal buried deep underground is part of the atmospheric carbon cycle.

        Sorry, but that carbon ain’t cycling anywhere, until WE release it. !

      • February 26, 2015 9:46 pm

        CO2 is not buried gold. Plus, the buried gold can flood the market in a way money created daily does not.

        You really do not understand the carbon cycle at all. Question—you said we were returning the CO2 to the air where it belongs. The carbon that was buried came from the air. So it is part of the atmospheric carbon cycle. The cycle is millions of years long, so you don’t count it? What about the other carbon sinks? Or is your “understanding” of climate science that CO2 from all sources is bad. If so, you don’t understand the theory at all.

      • AndyG55 permalink
        February 26, 2015 10:23 pm

        “CO2 is not buried gold.”

        For plant life it is !!!

        You really don’t understand basic concept of carbon/CO2 availability at all do you.

        Atmospheric CO2 levels are pretty much at their lowest in the history of the planet.

        And where is that carbon? Sequestered, a lot in carbonates, which we can’t really get at, but a lot is buried, out of circulation, as coal.

        We need to bring that carbon back into the atmospheric available carbon cycle.

      • AndyG55 permalink
        February 26, 2015 10:26 pm

        ” Or is your “understanding” of climate science that CO2 from all sources is bad.”

        Say what ?

        You really are not understanding anything are you !!

        CO2 from any source is GOOD !!!

        Even better if it increases the amount of available carbon in the shorter term carbon cycle. .. ie from fossil fuels.

      • outtheback permalink
        February 27, 2015 2:39 am

        Are you being sarcastic or is there something you do not understand

  15. February 26, 2015 6:18 pm

    “Also the value below is higher than the true value of CO2 emissions as no allowance was made for the carbon retained in the ash at the power station.”

    Incorrect. If there is carbon in the ash it is not CO2 emission.

    ” typical coal and natural gas fired power stations”

    Typical will not do. This problem is hand waving. a common way to hide important detail.

  16. Doug Proctor permalink
    February 26, 2015 8:58 pm

    To those who disagree with me above:

    I’m a skeptic oil and gas geologist, so let’s get that out if the way. I ain’t for the warmist cause.

    If you burn and grow in a closed cycle, CO2 in equals out. For the burned fuel, that is. Fossil fuel is ancient, sequestered CO2. In the time-frame of men and women, the CO2 produced is indeed an addition. Which is why the atmospheric ppm count rises.

    I do have “damn gall” when I recognize a strawman argument. As long as new growth concumes what is produced from burning of the old, there is no net change. Indeed, increasing planting temporarily decreases CO2 as standing stocks hold more CO2 as wood. The argument against biomass is economic and practical; this argument presents emissions data as if both styles of energy production have the same outcome, i.e. increases in atmospheric CO2. They do not.

    The politics of antiIPCC fighting has lead us to thin arguments. Biomass use leads to increased CO2 because of the necessity of fossil fuel use during the pre power generation stages. A 100% biomass power process would be stupid and require a collapse of our current civilization but it would be CO2 neutral. Without some human designed sequestration – again economically stupid at this stage unless used for EOR projects – fossil fuel CO2 will raise atmospheric content of CO2. Can’t be avoided, and IMO unimportant.

    I recently drove through large biomass operations in Oregon. Cropland has been displaced for the monoculture tree farms to feed the “reactors” nearby. They exist only because of subsidies, a stupid drain on the public purse. But they are CO2 neutral.

    Damn gall? Maybe. Perhaps I have assumed more “thinking things through” and emotional outrage against the impoverishing policies of our governments than what came to stimulate this post. In which case I apologize.

    • AndyG55 permalink
      February 26, 2015 9:14 pm

      “Fossil fuel is ancient, sequestered CO2. In the time-frame of men and women, the CO2 produced is indeed an addition”

      Not so much an addition.. just returning the carbon back to the carbon cycle, where it belongs.

      • February 26, 2015 9:18 pm

        Doug said he did not think the addition is important. Please read the comment before jumping in.
        And CO2 is not being returned to “where it belongs”. That is not scientific and really quite annoying. You really don’t understand the carbon cycle at all, it seems.

      • AndyG55 permalink
        February 26, 2015 9:23 pm

        The coal is trees that were once in the shorter term carbon cycle, and got removed.. put into storage, so to speak..

        The carbon in those trees is now, thankfully, being returned to that carbon cycle, where it should be.

        I’m glad that the concept annoys you. 🙂

      • February 26, 2015 9:57 pm

        I’m glad, too, AndyG55 that I am annoyed by bad scientific understanding.

      • AndyG55 permalink
        February 26, 2015 10:10 pm

        Yes, your lack of understanding most annoy you.

        Be do try to keep learning.

    • February 26, 2015 9:16 pm

      Doug—I agree with you (and I, too, depend on oil and gas for income and am a skeptic). I often hear people making comments about AGW that are baseless and show a lack of understanding of the theory, especially when it comes to CO2 and sources. Unfortunately, that just fuels the warmists in their claims that skeptics don’t understand the theory.

    • February 26, 2015 9:26 pm

      I don’t think Paul Homewood is trying to rally the troops with propaganda. I do believe you implied that – I think the amount of atmospheric CO2 which biomass production and combustion contribute is a consideration. As you know it is a complicated consideration. But your Zero is the wrong answer.

      In a budget, deficit spending is deficit spending. The money has to come from somewhere. You borrow to spend. Why doesn’t accelerating the release of CO2 into the atmosphere count? The ppm goes up just as surely on the day you burn it, no matter what the hydrocarbon source. The total amount of potential biomass is hardly fixed or static. Why are you treating as though it were? I suppose you assume all the so called fossil fuels were once biomass, right?

      • February 26, 2015 9:56 pm

        Don’t know about Doug, but I consider oil to be abiotic.

        The release of CO2 from biomass does increase the CO2 concentration in the air, but there are not enough trees on the planet, even if we burned them all, to raise the ppm the way oil and gas do. It’s simply a matter of volume. Not a “per fuel” volume, but an absolute one.

        Actually, there is not a deficit here, but rather a surplus of heat, which the CO2 is said to contribute to. There is no deficit of CO2, but a surplus. The fixed amount of CO2 and the biomass of course varies. Again, we can’t burn all the trees at once. We plant new ones. If we burn too many for fuel, we run out. It’s the logistics of large scale biomass that keep the CO2 from being a problem.

    • outtheback permalink
      February 27, 2015 3:59 am

      By replanting what we burned in trees there is no nett effect after X years, depending on how long it will take the replacement tree to absorb the amount of CO2 created by the harvesting of the tree and it’s burning thereof. You are correct on that.
      If, and that is the crux, we do the re planting. Only then there is basically a nil effect after X years. If we do not then we get behind in the scheme and it is twice as bad as using gas.
      Not dissimilar to gas, to undo the gas emitted CO2 we have to plant trees also, just half as many as when we burn trees. The for gas planted trees are on additional land whereas the trees planted for trees can be planted on the same land. So replanting needs to happen in both cases, it is a land availability issue. Needing additional land for trees when we burn gas.
      But we do need additional land also when we burn trees as the total harvesting and processing cycle of biofuel creates more CO2 per unit of electricity generated then for gas processing. Minimising the extra land needed argument.

      So we have more CO2 in the air as we need to in the short to medium term. And if the CO2 argument is valid time is not on our side. Hence it should be critical to those that follow that argument to use those fuels that emit the least.
      In the meantime all plant life seems to be thriving on the extra CO2 in the air and appears to be more drought and disease resistant. So do we really want to reduce that, I guess only those who belief that CO2 does indeed cause warming.
      Don’t get me wrong, I would love to see the end of fossil fuels used for energy and transport but that has nothing to do with CO2 caused global warming and so far none of the alternatives are clean, they all have pollution issues, from SF6 to Thorium.
      Nuclear is arguably the cleanest of the fuels but that is not without it’s issues either.
      That leaves hydro as the best option, sadly most often those that bellow about CO2 reduction also oppose the cleanest form of power generation. But it does create great power storage and on demand options.

  17. AndyG55 permalink
    February 26, 2015 9:55 pm

    Its all about the amount of carbon available for immediate use in the carbon cycle.

    The more usable carbon in the atmospheric carbon cycle, the more life will thrive.

    The very low levels of CO2 in recent history (100,000 year+) need correcting.

    Burning biomass does not increase or decrease the usable carbon in the carbon cycle.

    Buried carbon in coal is not usable, until it is released back into the atmospheric cycle.

    There is still a very large amount of unusable carbon locked away in coal and other fossil fuels.

    But we are gradually releasing small amounts of it, and plant life is responding.

    • February 26, 2015 10:00 pm

      Please explain scientifically, with equations and so forth, how it is that we are “very low” on CO2. That is no different than the warmists arguing we have to stay at the same temperature and giving no good explanation of why. If it’s a personal opinion, okay. So state please and I will treat it as such.

      You know, by your logic, if the ice caps melted we’d have a lot more water out there and water is good and we never have enough of it in droughts, so let’s melt the ice caps. Then we’d have so much more water and we grow things and life would be so wonderful.

      • AndyG55 permalink
        February 26, 2015 10:09 pm

        You are proving to be as ignorant as most alarmista. !

        Plants don’t like levels much lower than 250ppm.

        The last 1/4 million + years the CO2 level has oscillated between 300 and the plant death level of 180ppm.

        This is DANGEROUSLY low for the existence of all life on Earth.

  18. AndyG55 permalink
    February 26, 2015 10:17 pm

    We are, in fact still, right at the lowest level of atmospheric CO2 in the history of the planet.

  19. February 26, 2015 10:49 pm

    It’s the Drax power station in South Yorkshire UK that supplies 7-8% of UK electricity and uses wood pellets from North America. Drax has a US subsidiary Drax Biomass whose sole existence seems to be to supply wood pellets to the Drax power station. Drax Biomass website shows that the company is establishing and operating wood pellet plants in Louisiana and Mississippi states. Wood pellets are transported by truck to Baton Rouge Louisiana and shipped by freighter to UK, Immingham I guess.

    The website FAQ says “Why can’t we use the pellets for energy here in the U.S.?
    There is little current demand for pellets in the U.S. market as a result of slow legislative support, abundant domestic fossil fuel resources, and a lack of the financial incentives and subsidies for renewable fuels that exist in the U.K.”

    So rather than use available coal within 50 miles of the power plant, all of this wonderfully sustainable and green generation system depends solely on the very generous donations of UK residents to this company dictated by the elected UK government.

    Does this make sense to anyone other than some UK civil servants and MPs?

  20. February 27, 2015 12:25 am

    Looks like ignorance and dogma rule here. I can get that all day at Skeptical Science. Skeptics are just as dogmatic and unwilling to consider ideas as are warmists. I’m sure the warmists just love Andy spouting nonsense and showing he is ignorant of the entire theory of warming. Way to go, Andy.

    By the way, I’ll be hoping for the melting of the ice caps to release all that improperly stored water. I’ll be sure to credit you, Andy, with bringing to my attention that storing things we need, like water, is foolish, just as all that stored CO2 needs to be liberated. It’s all your idea, Andy. Thank you soooo much.

    • AndyG55 permalink
      February 27, 2015 1:01 am

      roflmao, Yes you have brought your non-thinking ill-educated dogma with you.

      Sorry your understanding is so limited.

      There is no shortage of water in the world, unless you haven’t noticed. (its called oceans)

      But a LOT of carbon that used to be in the short term carbon cycle, is now no longer available. The atmospheric CO2 level has been dangerously low for a long, long time.

      We can help that in a small way by de-sequestering the coal.

  21. February 27, 2015 3:17 am

    You all have missed the point. read;

    “We do not routinely estimate the emissions of biogenic carbon dioxide (CO2) from combustion of wood pellets when calculating the national emissions total. In reporting emissions the UK follows the requirements of IPCC guidelines on International Greenhouse Gas reporting. In order to avoid double counting of emissions and removals, the reporting convention is that the CO2 contained within biological materials, such as wood pellets, which are to be burnt for energy purposes, such as electricity generation, is accounted for by the harvesting country. This emission is reported by countries included under the forest management sector.”

    The UK and DRAX are getting a CO2 emissions free ride; The Americans are being charged for the CO2 emissions of production, harvest, transportation and combustion of the Bio-fuel while being denied credit sequestering credit for their forest growth. A free ride on emissions as well as being paid extra for Ecoloon friendly electric production.


  22. February 27, 2015 5:09 am

    Of course burning “gas”, assuming they mean CH4 produces less CO2. As you go up the H chain, propane, butane etc., CO2 production is even less because more and more of the energy release in combustion is from breaking Hydrogen rather than Carbon bonds.

    One must consider that the eventual fate of all wood is to be “burned” by either us or the microbes.


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