2020 kicked off with important, major coverage of the wood pellet industry in two major North Carolina papers, the Raleigh News & Observer and the Durham Herald Sun. On the heels of our campaign victory achieved in the NC Clean Energy Plan in November, this is another significant break-through on biomass in North Carolina.
These front page stories and several online stories are the culmination of nearly a year of research and reporting by two Pulitzer Center granted journalists.
Our team at Dogwood Alliance and many of our partners provided data, sources, and quotes. The series also contains an interview with North Carolina’s Department of Environmental Quality Secretary, Michael Regan, in which he criticizes biomass and says he doesn’t “see a future in wood pellets.”
With this series, we see how the wood pellet industry has gone from a little-known issue in North Carolina to one of the most well-covered, top environmental issues in the state, and our elected officials are paying attention.
Not only are North Carolina leaders waking up to the biomass scam, but elected officials throughout the US South are taking a stand against forest destruction and false energy solutions.
In Georgia, during last year’s legislative session, State Senator Lester Jackson introduced the Stand4Forests resolution, SR108. This year, we could see the resolution go to the floor for a vote! That means 2020 could be the year that Georgia officially stands for forests, endorsing the national Stand4Forests platform that opposes false solutions like biomass and advances protections for standing forests.
In 2020, we’ll be continuing to build a broad, strong public movement fighting for forest protection, climate action, and environmental justice.
We’ll continue our strategic advocacy to policymakers in NC, throughout the region and abroad, to turn their statements into real, immediate action that pulls the brakes on the destructive wood pellet industry and ensures more protections that keep our beautiful Southern forests standing.
See links to the stories below, and please share with your networks and on social media using the hashtags #StopEnviva and #Stand4Forests.
- “Slow Burn (Part 1): Europe uses tons of NC trees as fuel. Will this solve climate change?”
- “Slow Burn (Part 2): From Poland to NC, activists plea for reduced carbon dioxide”
- “Slow Burn (Part 3): World’s largest wood pellet maker both welcomed and condemned in NC”
- “Enviva facilities have generated hundreds of tons of air pollution a year, critics say”
- “DEQ Secretary Michael Regan discusses the wood pellet industry”