The furniture industry’s leading bodies have joined an unusual coalition of environmental charities and wood-using sector organisations in calling for strict limits of subsidies for burning wood in power stations.
The Furniture Industry Research Association (FIRA) and the British Furniture Confederation (BFC), in collaboration with organisations such as RSPB, Greenpeace and Friends of the Earth, were key signatories on a letter sent to the Government on Tuesday (22nd April) aiming to influence Energy Bill decisions set to be debated in Parliament next month.
The RSPB has sent out a news release about the letter stating their views on the impact of biomass subsidies on the environment and wood-using industries. It can be found here.
Dr Pete Beele, FIRA council member and FIRA international’s technical development manager, says: “Current biomass expansion plans could see biomass wood consumption reach six times the UK’s annual forestry harvest by 2017. Government subsidies for large biomass power companies will continue to drive the demand for virgin timber which will inevitably result in significant increases in its price. A Biomass Report, published by FIRA and the BFC in 2011, sets out how this will impact, not only on the producers of wood based products, but also on furniture manufacturers.
“FIRA and the BFC, amongst others, are in full support of lobbying the Government to use the UK Energy Bill to reflect environmental realities and to limit the scope of biomass in the energy sector, ultimately putting sustainability at the heart of the policy framework for biomass.”
If you feel strongly in support of the lobbying against biomass subsidies, there is an opportunity to email your local MP via the RSPB website.