JUST 23% OF BRITONS BELIEVE BURNING WOOD FOR ELECTRICITY IS “RENEWABLE ENERGY”
“The views of the public are clear: Burning wood for electricity is both unpopular and destructive,” said Sasha Stashwick, a senior advocate with NRDC. “It’s time for the government to end the wasteful subsidies for this polluting industry – especially when people don’t even consider it to be renewable energy. In this respect, our data shows a striking disconnect between government policy and public opinion.”
25th July 2020
On June 22nd, Dogwood Alliance joined forces with Biofuelwatch, NRDC (Natural Resources Defense Council), and the Southern Environmental Law Center to launch Cut Carbon Not Forests, a hard-hitting campaign to expose the UK’s wasteful subsidies for companies that burn trees for electricity and put pressure on policymakers to support reform. To learn more about the campaign, visit cutcarbonnotforests.org. This Press Release is an update on British opinion regarding biomass usage in relation to true clean energy sources.
As the COVID-19 lockdown is eased in the UK, the British public believes the UK’s recovery phase must prioritize true clean energy sources, such as wind and solar power.
LONDON – 22 July 2020– A new online YouGov poll has found fewer than one in four Britons (23%) think electricity generated by burning wood from forests should be classified as “renewable energy.” Additionally, 55% also disagreed with the Government’s continued subsidies for this dirty source of energy as part of the UK’s renewable energy strategy. Currently, the government gives more than £2 million per day in subsidies to power stations that burn biomass.
Instead, 82% of respondents agree that the UK should aim to preserve recent improvements in air quality by switching to clean energy sources with no associated air pollution emissions. While the public overwhelmingly backs support for wind (80%) and solar energy (82%), only 3% say the Government should help companies that burn wood sourced from forests overseas, the poll found. Nearly all UK biomass is imported.
The YouGov poll was jointly commissioned in July 2020 by Biofuelwatch, Dogwood Alliance, NRDC (Natural Resources Defense Council) and the Southern Environmental Law Center. [To request the full data tables, please email Richard Scarlett or Emma Briggs at NRDC@finnpartners.com]