"NORTHAMPTON, N.C. — Here’s a multibillion-dollar question that could help
determine the fate of the global climate: If a tree falls in a forest—and then
it’s driven to a mill, where it’s chopped and chipped and compressed into wood
pellets, which are then driven to a port and shipped across the ocean to be
burned for electricity in European power plants—does it warm the planet?
Most scientists and environmentalists say yes: By definition, clear-cutting
trees and combusting their carbon emits greenhouse gases that heat up the
earth. But policymakers in the U.S. Congress and governments around the world
have declared that no, burning wood for power isn’t a climate threat—it’s
actually a green climate solution. In Europe, “biomass power,” as it’s
technically called, is now counted and subsidized as zero-emissions renewable
energy. As a result, European utilities now import tons of wood from U.S.
forests every year—and Europe’s supposedly eco-friendly economy now generates
more energy from burning wood than from wind and solar combined."
Via Ted Kahn.
*** Xanni ***
Chief Scientist, Xanadu
Partner, Glass Wings
Manager, Serious Cybernetics