Exploring the Massive Clean Energy Boondoggle of Burning Trees as Carbon Neutral

Mish Talk
September 18, 2022
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy

In 2018, the EPA Declared That Burning Wood Is Carbon Neutral. …The Environmental Protection Agency announced that it would begin to count the burning of “forest biomass”—a.k.a. wood—as carbon neutral. The change will classify burning of wood pellets a renewable energy similar to solar or wind power. [But] Even if a tree is planted for every tree converted to fuel pellets, trees regrown on plantations don’t store the same carbon as natural forests. One recent study suggests it would take 40 to 100 years for a managed forest to capture the same amount of carbon as a natural forest. And since most plantation forests are harvested at 20 year intervals, they will never make it to the carbon-neutral point. “Unless forests are guaranteed to regrow to carbon parity, production of wood pellets for fuel is likely to result in more CO2 in the atmosphere and fewer species than there are today,” William Schlesinger writes.

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