Dave Elliott: In an opinion survey by YouGov for the Energy Technologies Institute, 80% of respondents supported an increase in bioenergy use in the UK. 74% supported producing bioenergy from biomass and 81% backed producing biomass from waste, comparable to levels of support seen for other renewables. However, some environmental groups strongly oppose some types of biomass use and there is a sometimes rather heated debate underway, as this extended post explores. The first area of contention is land use. The ETI noted that over a third of respondents were concerned about biomass competing with other land-uses such as food production, though the ETI says case studies show they can complement each other – they have also recently published a report on that, which says that it can help UK farmers diversify their income and increase the productivity of their land. The ETI says that initial investment costs can be paid back within 6-7 years and the impact on food production can be minimised or avoided by optimising the use of land.
Environmental Research Web 9th Sept 2017 read more »