the UK Government is consulting on the level of subsidies for all types of electricity which they class as renewable – including biomass power stations and electricity from biofuels (including palm oil). Their proposal is to continue to support biomass on an unlimited scale – even more than at present as far as co-firing of biomass with coal is concerned. They also propose to support the burning of up to 400,000 tonnes of biofuels for electricity per year (on top of the large-scale use of biofuels for transport). If all those biofuels were palm oil – a realistic prospect given that this is by far the cheapest vegetable oil – then 110,000 hectares of new oil palm plantations would be needed.
Those subsidies mean more deforestation and climate change, more land-grabbing for tree plantations and thus more human rights abuses and more people going hungry. At the same time, the Government is drastically cutting subsidies for solar PV and are proposing to cut back on subsidies for onshore wind which, according to Friends of the Earth, would harm small-scale and community wind projects.
Please go to www.biofuelwatch.org.uk/2011/rocs-alerts/ [ http://www.biofuelwatch.org.uk/2011/rocs-alerts/ ] and let the government and your MP know that renewable energy support should go to clean, sustainable real renewables, not to destructive biomass and bioliquid electricity. Please note that there are two separate email actions on the same webpage. Please help spread the word about those alerts. Many thanks!