NCLCV has joined 95 other environmental and social justice groups to tell the Biden Administration that biomass energy is not clean energy.
Biomass is energy derived from burning wood as a heat or electricity source. The climate, health, and environmental justice impacts from this can be just as bad as from the production and burning of fossil fuels. Harvesting, processing, and burning wood pellets from clear-cutting southern forests pump carbon into the atmosphere and damage forests, waters, wildlife, air quality, and poor communities.
The wood pellet industry is a real and growing environmental threat in North Carolina and other southern states. Processing wood into fuel pellets, and burning the pellets, emits millions of tons a year of heat-trapping carbon into the atmosphere. Further, the plants are often built near communities of color, and emit hazardous chemicals and particulates linked to diseases like asthma and heart disease.
Signers of the joint letter include 32 national groups such as the National Wildlife Federation, League of Conservation Voters, Sierra Club, and Natural Resources Defense Council, as well as 60+ state and local groups, including NAACP chapters, environmental justice organizations, and clean water, air, and energy groups.
The letter commends President Biden for withdrawing Trump and previous presidents’ attempts to define biomass as carbon-neutral. It urges the administration to “develop a scientifically sound framework for bioenergy that addresses impacts to our air, climate, and vulnerable communities — and ensure that those affected have a voice in decisions that may impact their health and quality of life.” It further urges the administration to “strongly oppose any congressional overreach related to bioenergy, including as part of congressional spending bills.”
The Southern Environmental Law Center coordinated the joint letter, and has also developed a petition telling the Biden Administration that biomass energy is not clean energy. Sign the petition now!