Clean Air Worth Fighting For
Members and supporters of the Breathe Clean Air Group in Trafford, Greater Manchester are still fighting to protect the air we breathe. Their latest campaign, sending emails and tweets to Government Ministers about the dangers the Barton Renewable Energy Plant in particular, and the burning of biomass in general, could be paying dividends.
“Over the last three weeks, we’ve sent over 100 emails to each of the three Ministers at the Department for Energy and Climate Change,” said Pete Kilvert, Chairman of the Breathe Clean Air Group. “Now, the Secretary of State, Ed Davey has announced that biomass is not only a temporary solution to the nation’s energy needs whilst proper renewable energy systems are being developed, but subsidies for biomass energy plants will cease by 2027. We hope that our action has had some influence on Mr Davey,” added Mr Kilvert.
“However, it’s more likely that there will be an imminent announcement from the Government’s chief energy Scientist David MacKay, that carbon dioxide emissions from burning biomass are much worse than the Government has so far claimed,” said Mr Kilvert. “The Breathe Clean Air Group has been saying this for the last three years, that burning biomass produces 50% more carbon dioxide than burning coal and 330% more carbon dioxide than burning natural gas. This is based on solid research carried out in Massachusetts, USA”.
President Obama recently announced an ambitious climate plan which includes placing the first ever limits on carbon pollution from existing power plants; the largest individual source of carbon pollution in the USA. His plan also cuts other potential greenhouse gases and will promote clean renewable energy projects.
In Trafford, Greater Manchester, the Barton Renewable Energy Plant plans to burn waste wood from construction and demolition sites along with industrial and commercial waste. Not only will this produce masses of carbon dioxide, but toxic chemicals that will have massive ill-health impacts. “Burning biomass is not safe for people or planet Earth,” said Mr Kilvert, “and we won’t stop our campaign until the Government stops this dirty process and chooses safer options.”
This week BCAG is asking supporters to email Owen Paterson at DEFRA who also has responsibility for climate change.