WHAT IS BIOMASS POWER?
Biomass power is electricity generated using plant-based fuels.
This can include wood pellets and wood chips, bioenergy crops or even agricultural and domestic waste.
It's renewable because we're continually growing plants and trees for a variety of purposes, but these processes often create residues that aren't needed.
Such residues can be used as a low-carbon, renewable alternative to displace fossil fuels. We can also use purpose-grown crops.
Biomass power is particularly useful because it does not depend on the weather, making it a uniquely flexible, reliable energy source.
As a result, biomass is Britain's second biggest source of renewable electricity. The Climate Change Committee believes sustainably sourced bioenergy could provide up to 15% of the UK's primary energy by 2050, and has said that "sustainable bioenergy is essential for reaching Net Zero."
ABOUT BIOMASS UK
Biomass UK represents 200 generators, suppliers and contractors in the UK's international biomass power supply chain.
Between them, our members are responsible for around 7-9% of Great Britain's electricity supply.
We're part of the UK's Association for Renewable Energy and Clean Technology (REA), which represents a broad range of renewable energy technologies.
Last quarter, biomass supplied:
of Britain's electricity,
% of total supply, Q1 2021
of our renewable electricity supply.
The Economist reports on progress in combatting deforestation around the world, where developed countries are using regulations and market forces to protect forests and create significantly more forest cover.
Healthy markets for forest products - including the market for wood fuel - helps to pay for measures that protect against wildfires like those in California in 2018, as well as preventing tree diseases and infestations.
Major investments in the UK's bioenergy supply chain at ports, rail freight and power stations have protected British jobs and smoothed the transition from coal dependence to a low-carbon economy.
Higher levels of sustainable bioenergy resource will reduce the overall cost of decarbonisation and help higher levels of ambition be achieved.
Biomass in a low-carbon economy
UK Committee on Climate Change, 15 November 2018