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Greens Have No Policy On Biomass

May 30, 2017

By Paul Homewood




The burning of wood pellets at biomass plants such as Drax is highly contentious. Many environmental experts are horrified at the damage done to wild forests both in the US and Europe.

Many experts also believe that biomass plants are not even achieving their stated object of reducing CO2 emissions.

Drax, on the other hand, maintain that they have stringent controls in place to alleviate these doubts.

But whichever side of the argument they are on, you would have thought the Green Party would actually have a policy one way or another.

I could not find one in their manifesto, so I asked them! And got this reply:



And this is the page in their manifesto that they refer to:


Biomass? What’s that?

I also contacted the US Green Party, as I imagined they at least would have a policy. No reply!

  1. May 30, 2017 6:29 pm

    The technicalities of energy production are beyond the intelligence and capability of the Green Party. They have no policies, just wishful thinking (as long as it doesn’t involve any real thinking).

  2. martinbrumby permalink
    May 30, 2017 6:42 pm

    The Greens suffer from the Reverse Midas Touch.

    Everything they touch turns to odure.

  3. martinbrumby permalink
    May 30, 2017 6:45 pm


  4. May 30, 2017 6:49 pm

    If u live in la-la land u don’t need this kind of detailed policy, u just need the fairy mushrooms to kiss it better

  5. Curious George permalink
    May 30, 2017 7:11 pm

    Is the Green Party really an EU member?

  6. Stuart Brown permalink
    May 30, 2017 7:19 pm

    Well, to play Devil’s advocate for a moment – their energy policy is on their website. It’s here:

    The word biomass appears just 6 times in the document, in these 4 paragraphs:

    EN220 A Green government would also accelerate the development of heat production from low carbon renewable sources through the deployment of renewable heat sources including heat pumps (air and ground source) and solar thermal as well as heat from decentralised biomass/biogas generation. We consider renewable heat can produce 160 TWh/year (thermal by 2030, and 200 TWh/year by 2050.

    EN221 We will ensure energy produced from biomass, including biogas, yields reductions in greenhouse gas emissions using sustainable wastes and domestic feedstocks for which indirect substitution emissions can be shown to be minimal. We will ensure that biomass generation, uses sustainably-sourced fuels produced according to stringent sustainability standards and is as far as possible carbon neutral.

    EN222 We will develop the use of biomass for heat supply through co-generation and for balancing power; new biomass power stations will be built as combined heat and power systems and if needed with carbon capture and storage capability.

    EN251 If CCS is proven at a commercial scale, we will support deployment of the technology, on a specifically transitional basis, to existing sustainable biomass and gas power stations and existing incineration plant. We will support deployment on a long term basis for sustainable biogas generating plant.

    Make of that what you will…

    To be honest, I was having difficulty from paragraph 1:

    EN001 This policy aims for a complete transformation of the energy system to one based on efficient use of energy supplied mainly by electricity from renewable sources. The policy will ensure an affordable and reliable energy supply for householders, commerce and industry in a prosperous and productive economy with excellent employment prospects. It will bring energy bills down; strengthen community control of energy use, supply and costs, and help to eradicate fuel poverty.

    I, for one, am unconvinced that ‘electricity from renewable sources’ can be equated with ‘ensure an affordable and reliable energy supply’ or ‘bring energy costs down’ and ‘eradicate fuel poverty’ in the real world.

  7. Nigel S permalink
    May 30, 2017 9:08 pm

    ‘investment in jobs rich renewable energy technology.’ Something Dale Vince knows all about. Pity about the Teifi but, hey ho, got to kill a few birds, bats and fish to save the planet.

    • Curious George permalink
      May 30, 2017 9:19 pm

      They mean something else by a “jobs rich renewable energy technology”. Instead of one coal miner job, they need forty renewable energy jobs to deliver the same output.

  8. May 31, 2017 11:10 am

    You don’t hear a peep from environmentalists here about the destruction on the bottomland hardwood forests. I mentioned once before, that I have done fieldwork along that river in the fall 1981 as a part of my late major professors “Ecosystematics” class at The University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, having returned for my PhD. The trees were massive, as were the nettles, poison ivy and Smilax (greenbrier–armed and dangerous). Those forests are amazing wildlife habitats and stabilize the river by preventing erosion.

    Just where are the environmentalists? Nothing to see here–literally nothing to see along the Roanoke River.

  9. rwoollaston permalink
    May 31, 2017 12:17 pm

    In almost the same way, many women’s rights groups have nothing to say about the treatment of women in certain cultures.

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