Tuesday, January 30, 2018

[biofuelwatch] Tell Drax what you think of its plans for a new gas-fired power station

Tell Drax what you think of its plans for a new gas-fired power station
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Dear supporters

Drax Plc plans to rebuild either one or both of its two remaining coal-burning units to run on gas instead. The plans were announced in the same week as the government's coal phaseout announcement.

Drax currently burns biomass – importing around 13 million tonnes of compressed wood pellets each year, including from trees felled in biodiverse coastal forests and processed in areas already suffering from environmental injustices in the southeastern USA – and coal from the UK, US and Colombia where it has been associated with human rights abuses. The new proposal would mean that as well as destroying forests and cooking the climate through its use of biomass, Drax would continue as the UK's largest burner of fossil fuels into the 2040s. For more information on Drax and the campaign against it, see our AxeDrax campaign page.

While the fossil fuel industry has rebranded gas an acceptable alternative to coal, it is still a fossil fuel that emits more carbon than we can afford to if we are to stay within 1.5 degrees of global warming. Building this infrastructure will lock us into continuing our dependence on dirty energy at a time when we urgently need to be reducing our energy use and switching to genuine no-burn renewables. Further, it could add to demand for fracking in the UK and worldwide, a dirty and unpopular process that is increasingly the target of community protests.

If we are to have any chance of a safe climate in the future, we can't afford to burn any gas, biomass or coal. Instead of diversifying into other forms of polluting power, Drax needs to be shut down and replaced with appropriate, genuinely 100% renewable energy such as wind, waves and sun alongside strong measures to reduce the UK's fuel use.

What can I do?

Biofuelwatch has drafted a response to Drax's statutory public consultation, which we encourage you to fill in and personalise if you have time.

Drax's public consultation is open until 5pm on 27th February. You can read more about the plans in our briefing our briefing here and see Drax's public consultation here.

Gas field in the Netherlands, where Drax may source some of its gas. Photo by Groenfront!
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Biofuels are a wide range of fuels which are in some way derived from biomass.

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