Tuesday, 13 November 2007

Biomass Emissions - Is there is no escape?

Whether you think a biomass fired power station in Tenbury Wells is a good idea or not, if Worcester County Councils plans are implemented then few people in the county will be unaffected by their emissions.

The County Council are planning to build 10 biomass fired power stations, and take a 19% equity interest in each, with the balance being made up by commercial investors.

(Update 15/11/07) I have heard today that the Council are denying that they have plans to build 10 power stations. They did express a desire to generate 25Mw of power to enable them to become carbon neutral, and the power plants that they are planning do generate 2.5Mw each. Make of that what you will!

The power stations, which are relatively inefficient and are only commercially viable with government financial support, will do nothing to reduce overall pollution.

If you are wondering why the Council are supporting this venture, it has little to do with security of supply, or environmental concerns, but is much more to do with a book balancing exercise.

Councils are required to become Carbon Neutral, and rather than take the more traditional method of examining working practices, reducing energy consumption, converting their fleet of vehicles to Biofuel etc, they have calculated that if they build 10 biomass fueled power stations, this will balance the books.

The Tenbury Action Group has booked a prominent independent toxicologist to come and speak at a public meeting in Tenbury Wells, to clarify the health impact.

Dr Dick van Steenis is a retired GP who takes a special interest in the health effects of fine particulates. These wood-fired power stations would emit fine particulates, known as PM2.5 and PM1, depending on their size. These particles are so small that they can be breathed in.

Dr van Steenis says that some of the adverse effects include birth defects, premature deaths, cot deaths, autism, Attention Deficit Disorder, lower IQ, asthma, coronary artery disease, heart attacks, arteriosclerosis, strokes and cancers.

He will speak in Tenbury Wells on November 28th, at the Royal Oak on Market Street. The event starts at 7.30pm and after the talk there will be a question and answer session. Admission is free and all are welcome.

Tenbury Action Group Press Statement.
Shropshire Star Petition signed by 2500
Shropshire Star Bishops Castle Group object to Power Plan
Shropshire Star Dr Dick van Steenis to talk on power fears

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