Tuesday, June 15, 2010

NRDC: Collins Wrong on Biomass

From Dr. Dan Lashof, a Harvard and Berkeley trained climate scientist:

Senator Collins of Maine made a particular point of complaining about the way EPA plans to regulate carbon dioxide emissions from biomass combustion. Her talking points echoed very closely a letter to EPA dated May 24th, from Weyerhaeuser CEO Daniel Fulton...

Weyerhaeuser's claim that biomass combustion is always carbon neutral is patently false. While combustion of biomass from certain sources is carbon neutral, using biomass from others can add as much or more carbon to the atmosphere as burning fossil fuels. For example, waste biomass from a sustainably managed timber plantation can be carbon neutral, whereas timber obtained from clearing a mature forest for development can have higher net emissions than coal combustion.

EPA fully recognizes that biomass combustion should not be treated identically to fossil fuel combustion...and has indicated in its response to Mr. Fulton's letter that it will seek public input, including from stakeholders such as Weyerhaeuser, before providing guidance on how emissions from biomass should be treated in regulations...

Senator Collins has cosponsored a bill to require reductions in carbon pollution and indicated today that she wants to work across the aisle to advance a bill. I welcome her involvement and hope that she will follow the science, not the timber industry’s false claims, when it comes time to debate how biomass emissions should be handled in that legislation.
Imagine: Lots of facts, no coddling whatsoever.

Take note, LCV.

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