Watching Belinda Joyner’s anxious, very angry, plea for the biofuel industry in the UK to stop its involvement in an industry destroying lives in her impoverished community and raging against the the giant biomass power station in Yorkshire, Drax, and its massive US/Canada imports of whole mature trees, felled for that purpose alone, I was moved to find out more.
In 2020, 63% of the pellets burned by Drax were imported from the South-Eastern US. In addition to those 4.68 million tonnes, Drax also burned 1.23 million tonnes from Canada and 836,542 tonnes from the Baltic States, as well as smaller quantities from Portugal, Brazil, Belarus and Russia.
It’s worth watching.
I note that the Scottish Government has moved away from an initial broad enthusiasm for this technology toward a more sustainable form. More on this at: https://www.gov.scot/publications/bioenergy-update-march-2021/pages/2/
Also, in March 2019, Falkirk Council rejected a planning application which would have extended planning consent for a major bio-fuel power plant. There is now no planning consent to allow a bio-fuel power plant to be built at Grangemouth More at: https://www.biofuelwatch.org.uk/2018/grangemouth-success/
Looking around my local area in South-West Scotland, I found what seems to be a relatively sustainable example.
LandEnergy in Girvan, Ayrshire, make the following claims:
The cornerstone of Land Energy’s supply chain is our wood pellet production plant situated on the South West coast of Scotland in the South Ayrshire town of Girvan. The plant was developed and built by Land Energy and is and located within the Galloway and Southern Ayrshire UNESCO Biosphere, the largest forested area in the UK – that’s why we are here.
All of our timber comes from sustainable, and responsibly-managed forest sources which adhere to UK standards and comes from the local area around the plant.
The average distance our feedstock to reach the plant is 56km, a fraction of the distance travelled by conventional coal or oil energy resources. We are on the Biomass Supplier List and comfortably surpass their requirements, ensuring that you will meet all your RHI obligations.