High-Grade Wood Going to Nova Scotia Biomass Incinerator

- by Tom Ayer , May 12, 2014, Source: Cape Breton Bureau

Business owners in Cape Breton who rely on the forest for a living say high-quality hardwoods are making their way into Nova Scotia Power’s biomass plant in Point Tupper, consuming a wood supply that instead should be available for value-added businesses such as flooring and lumber.

David Fraser of BA Fraser Lumber in Margaree Valley, Inverness County, says he is seeing fewer quality saw logs and he blames it on Nova Scotia Power’s policy of getting the most amount of biomass fuel for the cheapest price.

EPA Seeks Comments on “Repowering America’s Land Initiative”

[Contact the EPA at cleanenergy@epa.gov by May 30 and urge them NOT to include biomass energy in their plans. -Ed.] 

- Erin Voegele, May 8, 2014, Source: Biomass Magazine

The U.S. EPA is seeking public comments on its new draft action plant for the RE-Powering America’s Land Initiative. The program promotes renewable energy development on current and formerly contaminated lands, landfills and mine sites.

In August 2013, the EPA announced an update of its RE-Powering Mapping and Screening Tool. The updated tool showed vast potential for the development of bioenergy projects on contaminated lands, landfills and mine sites. According to the EPA, the updated tool identified 9,591 sites as potential locations for biorefinery facilities, 9,666 sites for potential biopower development and 1,947 sites as potential locations for landfill gas energy projects. To date, however, most projects developed through the initiative focus on wind or solar power generation. Of the 110 installations developed so far, only one is a biomass project. That project, the 20 MW Savannah River’s Biomass Steam Plant, is located on a Superfund site in Aiken, S.C.

The Height of Stupidity? Jet Fuel from Trees

[Yet another bad idea fueled by the fantasy of infinite growth. -Ed.]

- May 9, 2014,  Source: Phys Org

A key challenge in the biofuels landscape is to get more advanced biofuels—fuels other than corn ethanol and vegetable oil-based biodiesel—into the transportation pool. Utilization of advanced biofuels is stipulated by the Energy Independence and Security Act; however, current production levels lag behind proposed targets. Additionally, certain transportation sectors, such as aviation, are likely to continue to require liquid hydrocarbon fuels in the long term even as light duty transportation shifts to alternative power sources.

A multi-university team lead by George Huber, Professor of Chemical and Biological Engineering at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, has addressed both challenges through the concerted development of technology designed to transform lignocellulosic biomass into a jet fuel surrogate via catalytic chemistry. This promising approach highlights the versatility of lignocellulose as a feedstock and was recently summarized in the journal Energy & Environmental Science by team member and lead author Jesse Q. Bond, Syracuse University Assistant Professor of Biomedical and Chemical Engineering.

Call for Submissions: Energy Justice Now

In June 2014, Energy Justice Network will be launching Energy Justice Now — a first-of-its kind publication reporting on the entire spectrum of the dirty energy resistance and highlighting the voices of community organizers battling fossil fuels, nuclear power, and biomass and trash incineration from sea to shining sea. 

We are accepting submissions (200-1,000 words) on any topic relevant to dirty energy — nuclear, gas, coal, oil, biomass/trash — with priority given to original content (we also accept reprints) that is national in scope and addresses more than one source of energy. 

We also also accepting photos, graphics, memes, illustrations, and cartoons revelant to the movement.

Please send submissions or queries to Josh [at] EnergyJustice [dot] net. 

Since 1999, Energy Justice Network has worked with communities across the U.S. to oppose every kind of dirty energy facility — from coal and natural-gas fired plants, to nuclear reactors, to biomass and trash incinerators — to protect human health and the natural world that keeps us alive.

Stay tuned for June 2014 and the birth of Energy Justice Now — because clean energy can’t come out of a smokestack!

In solidarity,

Mike Ewall, Josh Schlossberg, Rachel Smolker, and Samantha Chirillo

Editors, Energy Justice Now

Biomass Energy: More Harm Than Good [The Biomass Monitor: May 2014]

May 2014 issue of The Biomass Monitor: BIOMASS ENERGY: MORE HARM THAN GOOD
 
In the May 2014 issue of The Biomass Monitor (the world's leading publication tracking the health & environmental impacts of "biomass" energy):
 
-"Trees Are Not the Solution to Our Electricity Needs"
 
-"Public Lands, Dirty Energy"
 
-"Climate Report Leaves Hopes Hanging on Fantasy Tech"
 
...and more!!!
 
Please share the May 2014 issue of The Biomass Monitor with your friends, colleagues, and neighbors!
 
CLICK HERE to subscribe to monthly emails from The Biomass Monitor.

Intergovernmental Climate Report Leaves Hopes Hanging on Fantasy Technology

- by Rachel Smolker,  Biofuelwatch 

This year, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has confirmed for us, once again, that the planet is warming, even more and even faster than panel members thought. In fact, it is getting even warmer even faster than they thought the last time they admitted to having underestimated the problem. We humans are in deep trouble, and finding a way out of this mess - one that will ensure a decent future for us - is becoming increasingly difficult, if not nearly impossible. 

 

That difficult task is what the latest installment from IPCC, the Working Group 3 report on mitigation is intended to address. This past weekend, the "summary for policymakers" was released after the mad rush of government negotiations over the scientists' text took place in Berlin last week.

Welcome to Energy Justice Now!

Welcome to Energy Justice Now, Energy Justice Network's first monthly newsletter!

Energy Justice Now will provide critical reporting on the entire spectrum of the dirty energy resistance, highlighting the voices of community organizers battling fossil fuels, nuclear power, and biomass and waste incineration from sea to shining sea. We are accepting submissions at niaby [at] energyjustice [dot] net.

Some of you are on our email discussion lists while others may not have heard from us in years. We're happy to now be at a point where we can engage and support more people, and let you all know what we're doing.

Energy Justice Network exists to build, support and network grassroots community organizations fighting dirty and unnecessary energy and waste industry facilities. We've helped communities win victories against coal and gas-fired power plants, incinerators of every sort (trash, 'biomass,' tires, poultry waste, sewage sludge, medical waste...), landfills, fracking, pipelines, refineries, ethanol biorefineries, nuclear facilities and more.

Our approach includes connecting people fighting similar industries so that they're helping one another as a network, rather than our trying to only provide top-down support. Through network-building, we help bring people from a Not In My Backyard (NIMBY) mindset to a Not in Anyone's Backyard (NIABY) approach toward dirty technologies for which clean alternatives exist.

In 2006, we pulled together the nation's first and only grassroots "No New Coal Plants" network, contributing to the defeat of 85% of 200+ coal power plant proposals. We also brought together a national grassroots movement against "biomass" incinerators (burning trees, wood waste, poultry waste and more), and saw 45 proposals for biomass and other waste incinerators defeated within our network just since 2010. We hope to do the same soon for those fighting the hundreds of gas-fired power plants now proposed. Without the big money other groups have to bring people together for national conferences, we've connected people via email discussion lists and conference calls.

Our work focuses on providing tools grassroots community activists need to win. This includes providing strategy and organizing advice, research support, information of many sorts (on problems with technologies and fuels, corporate track records, relevant public policies...), speaking/training, local environmental ordinances, mapping tools, connecting student and community activists, and much more. For more info, see our website for our history, accomplishments and to learn about the services we provide.

Poll: 61% of Americans Clueless about Biomass Energy

[Take a look at the Harris Poll here. - Ed.]

- by Erin Voegele, March 28, 2014. Source: Biomass Magazine

A recently released Harris Poll addresses public perception of a variety of energy technologies, including biomass energy. The results show that many U.S. adults are unfamiliar with biomass energy and its benefits.

Within its results, the company called biomass the “biggest question mark” on the survey, as 61 percent of adults surveyed said they were not at all sure of its risks or benefits. Approximately 29 percent, however, said they feel the benefits of biomass outweigh its risks. Only 9 percent of those polled said they believe the risks of biomass outweigh its benefits.

Trees Are Not the Solution to Our Electricity Needs

- by Marvin Roberson, April 27, 2014. Source: Detroit Free Press

There is a lot of concern in Michigan, especially the Upper Peninsula, about meeting future electrical needs. Many aging, polluting coal plants are soon to go offline, as they should. New coal plants are unlikely to replace them, and would be a poor choice even if feasible.

There is, and should be, significant focus on energy efficiency and renewable sources of electricity. A portion of our future needs is likely to be met through biomass electricity generation. Biomass electricity is generated by burning plants.

Fire at Brand New Biomass Incinerator in Rothschild, Wisconsin

[Read our article "Biomass Industry Plays with Fire, Gets Burned," compiling all the biomass-related fires up until May 2013...it's getting hard to keep up - Ed.]

-April 11, 2014. Source: Wasau Daily Herald

ROTHSCHILD — Firefighters extinguished a blaze that ignited in a dust collector at the Domtar biomass power plant early Friday morning.

Rothschild Fire Department crews responded to the plant just before 4:30 a.m., said Chief Marc Hill. When crews got to the plant, a fire was burning inside the dust collector and smoke was coming out of the structure. No one was injured in the blaze, but it took fire crews about three hours to completely put out the fire.

A ladder truck from the SAFER fire station in Weston and its crew also responded to the fire, Hill said.

The fire apparently started after some wood became caught in a giant shredder called a hog, Hill said. The friction caused by the material and machinery created heat and sparks, which were pulled into the dust collector through a collection system. The fire started quickly in the dust collector, Hill said.

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