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Stop subsidising energy firms that burn trees for electricity

Ministers must avoid handing out generous new subsidies for burning of wood imported from the United States, MPs have warned. The Government should instead be supporting British renewables which could slash households' energy bills and carbon emissions.

Pauline Latham, Tory MP for Mid Derbyshire, said: “Burning wood for electricity is not getting any cheaper and depends entirely on expensive subsidies.

“It’s difficult to explain why we are considering giving more money to biomass to ship wood from the USA to burn instead of backing homegrown renewables, which will cut people’s bills and carbon.”

Tory MP Selaine Saxby warned the practice of burning trees for power risks fuelling deforestation overseas.

She said: “Woody biomass power isn’t cheap, clean or the best use of this waste material.

“It also risks fuelling deforestation abroad if other countries look to replace their coal plants with woody biomass power. Instead of burning wood pellets for electricity, we should back our timber industry to turn waste wood into furniture and construction materials, which store carbon and make our buildings more sustainable.”

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