McNeil Biomass Plant - Burlington, Vermont
IT'S TIME TO STOP SUBSIDIES FOR BIOMASS IN MASSACHUSETTS
Let's build on last year's legislative success, when Massachusetts kicked wood burning power plants out of our biggest clean energy program, the Renewable Portfolio Standard! Two new bills sponsored by Senator Adam Gomez and Representative Orlando Ramos need your support to remove wood burning from qualification under other Massachusetts clean energy programs:
S.2137/H.3211 would make large and intermediate-sized heating units that use wood-based fuel (such as wood boilers and furnaces) ineligible for subsidies through Massachusetts’ Alternative Energy Portfolio Standard (APS). (Small units and those that are already participating in the program wouldn’t be affected). With this change, the APS "renewable thermal" subsidy will help incentivize truly clean technologies -- such as heat pumps, solar hot water, and geothermal systems -- without incentivizing more commercial-scaled and industrial wood burning facilities.
S.2136/H.3210 would remove biomass from the list of “non-carbon emitting sources” that municipal lighting plants (MLPs) can use to meet the new MLP greenhouse gas emission standard (GGES). The MLP GGES is part of the 2021 Roadmap Law, and places some important clean energy requirements on MLPs, which are currently exempt from the RPS, the APS, and other clean energy requirements. Unfortunately, under that law, biomass is set to be included in the list of “non-carbon emitting sources” effective January 1, 2026. This bill would remove biomass from the GGES altogether.
We need to bring all of our clean energy programs in line with the RPS by removing woody biomass from eligibility for subsidies, as the science on the polluting effects of wood-burning becomes clearer and clearer!
Please contact your legislators today and ask them to co-sponsor S.2137/H.3211 and S.2136/H.3210.
The list of co-sponsors will be updated here.
Governor Healey made a campaign promise to "end subsidies for forest bioenergy for electricity and commercial-scale heat" -- these are the bills that will make that happen!