Protest in London Against UK Biofuel Subsidies

by Antonio Pasolini on October 22, 2011

Photo: Campaign Against Climate Change

Biofuelwatch and Campaign Against Climate Change have joined forces to stage a protest in London, UK, today.

The protest has been timed to coincide with a public consultation on the financing of renewable electricity that launches this week. Campaigners warn that government proposals to prioritize bioenergy over wind and solar energy “will be a major step backwards in the fight against climate change”.

The campaigners said that government proposes to further increase subsidies for electricity from (largely imported) biomass, whilst cutting subsidies for onshore wind and solar PV. They are also supporting electricity from biofuels, most likely palm oil, equivalent to five times the UK’s palm oil use in biofuels today.

“Instead of rewarding only true renewable energy, such as sustainable wind and solar power, a large and growing share of ROCs goes to biomass (wood) and biofuel power stations” they said in a press statement.

They added that nearly all of the biomass and biofuels burned in UK power stations will be imported from countries including Indonesia, Brazil, Ghana or Kenya.

“Burning biomass and biofuel causes air pollution causing health problems for those who live nearby”, they warned.

Meanwhile, the European Biodiesel Board said that EU biodiesel production forecasts for 2011 show a reduction of European production compared to the same time last year. As of July 2011, the European biodiesel production capacity reached 22 million tonnes.

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