On the evening of the 9th, delegates will celbrate a Gala Dinner and Awards Ceremony for 'outstanding contributions'. Biofuelwatch is organising an Alternative Awards Ceremony outside and invites people to vote for the Biggest Biomass Baddie beforehand. The Biomess Awards candidates are:
- DECC, whose subsidy rules have skewed renewable energy markets heavily in favour of big biomass, even though around three-quarters of energy classed as 'renewable' in the UK comes from burning biomass or waste. Under DECC's subsidy rules, Drax can look forward to around £694 million of subsidies every year;
+ Drax who burn more biomass than any other company in the UK. Most of this is imported wood from North America, from regions where ancient, biodiverse and carbon-rich forests are being clearcut rapidly. One of their suppliers, Enviva, has been shown to turn wood from clearcut ancient swamp forests into pellets.
+ Enviva, the biggest US pellet producer and a supplier to Drax and E.On. They use wood from the clearcutting of swamp forests in North Carolina which are amongst the most biodiverse temperate ecosystems in the world;
+ The Wood Pellet Association of Canada, who have been lobbying the EU to make sure no measures will be taken that would make it difficult for their members from exporting pellets from clearcut oldgrowth forests to Europe;
+ The Green Investment Bank, whose first large loan went to Drax. This loan helped Drax avoid being closed down under EU sulphur dioxide rules by burning millions of tonnes of imported wood alongisde millions of tonnes of coal every year long term.
Please go to http://www.biofuelwatch.org.uk/biomess-awards/ to vote and to find out more about the protest on 9th April (7pm, London, outside Gibson Hall, 13 Bishopsgate, London, EC2N 3BA).