NGOs: GREATER GIB POWERS SHOULD COME WITH GREENER RESPONSIBILITY
Ed Miliband has called for the Green Investment Bank (GIB) to have “real powers to borrow and attract investment”. The United Kingdom Without Incineration Network (UKWIN) and Biofuelwatch  have responded by saying that any increase in funding or powers for the GIB should be linked to a responsibility to be greener in their investments.
Biofuelwatch & Campaign to STOP Genetically Engineered Trees press release – for immediate use Thursday 4th September 2014
Hundreds of groups call on Brazilian government to reject GE trees application by UK-registered company
Social and ecological justice organizations from around the world have signed two letters [1, 2] addressed to the Brazilian government calling on it to reject an application by UK-registered FuturaGene to plant the world’s first commercial-scale genetically engineered (GE) eucalyptus plantations.  FuturaGene is owned by Brazilian pulp and paper company Suzano, which was exposed last year for causing land conflicts over eucalyptus plantations linked to wood pellet exports to UK biomass power stations. 
Biofuelwatch media release – for immediate use Wednesday 25th June
Protesters target Green Bank Annual Review over dirty investments
Photographs available here: http://www.biofuelwatch.org.uk/2014/london-gib-photos/
Environmental groups  staged a protest at the first of two Green Investment Bank (GIB) Annual Review events in London this morning. Campaigners criticised the GIB for investing almost £200 million into “dirty” energy projects this year, including biomass power stations and waste incinerators. Local residents and members of the Avonmouth Coalition Against Big Biofuels also presented GIB Chairman Lord Smith with an open letter  highlighting fears over GIB finance for a deeply unpopular biomass power station, which will require some 1 million tonnes of imported wood each year.
18 organisations and individuals including three MSPs, Biofuelwatch, Friends of the Earth Scotland and residents of impacted areas, have published an open letter (see below) to the Green Investment Bank ahead of its Annual Review in Edinburgh this week. The letter calls on the GIB to revoke its loan to Drax Plc and to make commitments not to finance two consented big biomass power stations at Grangemouth and Rosyth, in Scotland.
A new website has been created to allow concerned residents to record experiences of living next door to the UK’s biggest biomass power station.
In Markinch and Glenrothes in Scotland, the biggest biomass power station in the UK has recently reached completion. It is unknown what the impacts of this development will be on nearby communities over the long-term, with some members of the community already experiencing difficulties such as noise pollution.
While it is too late to prevent the plant from operating, it is not too late to make sure that the operator, RWE, is held accountable to the local community. Markinch Community Concerns was set up with support from Biofuelwatch for just this purpose. The aim being to make sure that RWE keep their promises and that SEPA continues to monitor the situation in the best interests of the people directly affected. Gathering a collective body of evidence will also allow members of the community to have a bigger impact on informing decision making in the future, rather than registering individual complaints.
The website encourages people experiencing impacts from the power station to share their stories and to register their complaint with SEPA. The site is supported by a facebook group.
You can visit the site here
Biomass Emergency - Video by Reel News, UK Continue reading Video by Reel News: Biomass Emergency
+ Drax have been guaranteed subsidies for converting a second of their six coal power station units to biomass. Each converted unit will require pellets made from 5.5 million tonnes of wood  – that is wood from slow-growing whole trees, the only type of biomass that can be burned in converted power stations . They are already in receipt of subsidies for their first converted unit – £190 million a year at full capacity – and now they have been guaranteed at least £250 million a year for converting another unit.
+ RWE Npower have been guaranteed subsidies for converting the 420 MW Lynemouth Power Station to biomass. This woud require pellets made from 3.3 million tonnes of wood a year. RWE bought Lynemouth Power Station, complete with planning permission to convert, in late 2012; Continue reading DECC’s latest renewable electricity subsidy guarantees threaten forests, communities and climate
For immediate use Wednesday 23rd April 2014
Photographs available here: http://www.biofuelwatch.org.uk/2014/drax-protest-photos/ Continue reading Anti-biomass and coal Campaigners disrupt Drax AGM and call for UK’s most polluting power station to close
Drax AGM Protest: No to Coal and Biomass, 23rd April
Campaigners disrupted the Drax AGM by unfurling a banner reading “No to biomass and coal – shut down Drax” and and accusing company directors of misleading the public over claims that their biomass conversion is low-carbon, renewable energy. Others were holding a simultaneous banner protest outside.
See here for the press release with more details.
Big Bike Bash Against Industrial Biomass in Bristol, 12th April
For more photos see : https://www.flickr.com/photos/123175252@N04/with/13833560823/
Biomess Awards, 9th April 2014
DECC are announced winner of the Biomess Award as major biomass industry conference is targeted by protest -
Read Press Release here