GOVERNMENT CLOSES DOOR ON NATIVE FOREST WOOD FIRED ENERGY
Conservationists have welcomed today's federal Government announcement that native forest wood biomass would not be reclassified as renewable energy.
Spokesperson for the Chipstop campaign, Harriett Swift says that the announcement has closed the door on any native forest wood energy projects for the foreseeable future.
"Without the subsidies that classification as renewable energy would bring, the bio-energy is a dead duck," Ms Swift says.
The announcement from Climate Change Minister, Greg Combet was in the Government's response to a Climate Change Authority report which recommended that native forest wood biomass be included in the Renewable Energy Target. http://www.climatechange.gov.au/en/media/whats-new/~/media/publications/renewable-energy/governmentt-response-to-cca-review-pdf.pdf
Minister Combet's response said: "Wood waste from native forests was removed from the RET as an eligible renewable energy source in 2011. This amendment was made to ensure that the RET did not provide an incentive for the burning of native forest wood waste for bio-energy, which could lead to unintended outcomes for biodiversity and the destruction of intact carbon stores. The Government does not consider that circumstances have changed sufficiently since 2011 to warrant this issue being reconsidered. "
Ms Swift says that today's decision should ensure that the Eden chipmill wood fired power station remains permanently shelved.
"In the past few months we have seen both the power station and the pellet plant collapse."
"The industry has clung to the pipedream of an income stream from bio-energy, which it hoped would drag it out of the mire of poor woodchip prices and contracting woodchip markets."
"It is time for the woodchipping industry to face up to realities and get out of native forest woodchipping altogether," she says.
21 March 2013