Massachusetts Poised to Slash Biomass Power Subsidies
Any day now, the Massachusetts Department of Energy Resources (DOER)
is scheduled to issue Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS) regulations
that will require energy producers seeking "renewable energy credits" to
meet strict standards regarding efficiency (likely disqualifying all
biomass power incinerators), greenhouse gases, and compliance with
forest logging standards.
One Florida Biomass Proposal Down
Nov. 30, 2011:
A 55-megawatt biomass power proposal for Port St. Joe, FL has been
withdrawn by the developer Rentech, as a civil rights complaint was
filed with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) charging the Florida Department of Environmental Protection with environmental racism in granting the facility its air permit in July 2011.
Gainesville residents continue to fight back against the construction of a 100-megawatt biomass power incinerator.
City Defends Biomass Moratorium in Vancouver, WA
Oct. 31, 2011: Schneider Electric,
a biomass power developer based in France, filed a lawsuit against the
City of Vancouver, WA following an Oct. 11 City Council decision to
enact a six-month moratorium on downtown development.
"The lawsuit is at best premature because the city council is required
by law to hold a public hearing on the moratorium which has not yet
happened," said Vancouver City attorney Ted Gathe. "We intend to
vigorously defend the city against these claims."
Two Biomass Proposals Axed in Indiana
Oct. 12, 2011: Liberty Green Renewables
has withdrawn its two 32-megawatt biomass power incinerator proposals
for Milltown and Scottsburg, Indiana. The corporation asked the Indiana Department of Environmental Management to revoke air emission permits previously issued by the state.
"What the citizens did was remarkable because the little guy was up against big energy and big banks," said Cara Beth Jones of Concerned Citizens of Crawford County,
part of the local grassroots biomass opposition. Citizen resistance
included filling public meetings, educating elected officials, airing
television ads, and filing legal appeals.
Valdosta, Georgia Biomass Power Proposal Expires
June 1, 2011: A proposal for a controversial 40-megawatt biomass power incinerator for Valdosta, Georgia may be canceled after developer Wiregrass Power missed a deadline for construction laid out by the Industrial Authority, according to an "Economic Development Agreement."
was the most diverse group of people that I have ever seen for any
citizen's group in Valdosta," said Leigh Touchton, President of the Valdosta Chapter of NAACP, which has opposed the facility due to public health and environmental justice concerns.
Springfield, Mass. City Council Revokes Biomass Power Permit
May 23, 2011:
The Springfield, Massachusetts City Council has voted 9-2 to revoke a
special use permit for the construction of a 35-megawatt biomass power
incinerator by Palmer Renewable Energy.
Springfield is designated an "environmental justice" community by the
EPA, with its population having a significant percentage of low-income
residents and people of color.
Mecklenburg County, North Carolina Closes Two Incinerators
May 5, 2011: Mecklenburg Solid Waste has stated they will not recommend engaging with ReVenture
to build a trash gasification incinerator, which would have burned
370,000 tons of garbage per year. The decision follows the news that the
BMWNC medical waste incinerator has closed and will be decommissioned.
Vermont Biomass Power Incinerator Application Withdrawn
April 18, 2011: Beaver Wood Energy has withdrawn its application for a certificate of public good from the Vermont Public Service Board for a 29.5-megawatt biomass power incinerator proposed for Pownal, VT. Organized opposition from citizens, including Bennington-Berkshire Citizens Coalition, raised public awareness about the negative health, environmental and fiscal impacts of the project.
Coal to Biomass Power Stymied in Ohio
March 30, 2011: The Public Utilities Commission of Ohio (PUCO) has revoked FirstEnergy Generation Corporation's
renewable energy certification for the conversion of the 312-megawatt
Burger facility from coal to woody biomass. The revocation follows FirstEnergy's March 3 motion to withdraw its application, on the grounds that "biomass is not economically feasible," according to PUCO.
Shelton, WA Stops Biomass Incinerator
March 14, 2011: ADAGE--a joint venture with nuclear power producer Areva and Duke Energy--canceled plans for a 55-megawatt biomass power incinerator for the Port of Shelton, Washington. "This is a victory for the citizens of Mason County," said Beth McBain, spokesperson for the Concerned Citizens of Mason County,
which has organized rallies, hosted public forums, and educated elected
officials over the past year on the impacts of biomass incineration.
Oregon Paper Mill Won't Burn Biomass
Jan. 7, 2011: A proposal by ADAGE--a joint venture with nuclear power producer Areva and Duke Energy--to convert a closed International Paper
mill in Millersburg, Oregon into a biomass power incinerator has
fizzled. In March, citizen backlash against a proposed 55-megawatt
biomass power incinerator in Gretna, Florida caused Adage to cancel the