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[greenyes] Rewewable Energy Standard
Lorrie Ogren and Bob got into an exchange about the issue of whether a
Renewable Energy Standard should be put into the pending energy legislation
if "biomass" is included as one eligible forms of "renewable" energy.

"Biomass" has been interpreted and defined in different ways in different
bills and programs. Sometimes it has been defined to be "closed loop," which
limits it to recovery of energy from plantings specifically for energy
recovery.  Other times it has been defined to include landfill gas.

This is an important issue because, under those state programs that exist,
the fact energy recovery from landfill gas is cheaper than from wind, has
resulted in far more of the total compliance with the RES has been met from
landfills than from real solar/wind renewables.

Not only does this not advance real renewables (there is no way wasted
resources in landfills can properly be called "renewable"), but also it
effectively subsidizes disposal at the expense of recycling.

For all of these reasons, it is very important that recyclers communicate to
their environmental collegues that landfill gas is neither renewable, nor an
appropriate item to include under the RES umbrella.

Otherwise the admirable concept of renewable energy will be bootlegged to
the abate one more financial nail in recycling's coffin.

                                                            Peter

ps. Economic analyses by Doug Koplow suggests that the subsidy that flows
from these green portfolios that RES programs create are greater than the
parallel subsidies for tax credits for landfill gas.







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