Wednesday, 30 September 2009
Avonmouth and the Orang utans
This picture was taken in Indonesia - it's one of the huge 'Earth from the Air' placards that will be on display through Bath city centre through till January. The exhibition's been updated since its appearance in Bristol four or five years ago. See them if you possibly can! Take the family!
This picture is from a planning application (09/03235/F) currently awaiting 'determination' by Bristol City Council. It's what one small corner of Avonmouth could look like.
What they have in common is palm oil. At the Indonesian end, as a crop to replace the rainforests. At Avonmouth, as a 'renewable' fuel earning premium prices in the electricity generating market.
The power station is proposed by a firm called W4B Bristol Ltd, of Bourne End in Buckinghamshire. It does have some merits... it uses a site and some of the structures left by Sevalco Ltd. But it doesn't even attempt to do anything other than generate electricity for the grid - its other potentially useful product, process heat, will be wasted.
Nor does it attempt to use locally produced biofuels. The oils it uses will be highly processed products imported from the other side of the planet at the expense of the rainforest (not to mention the orang utans). Certainly not from Bristol's takeaways! Carbon neutral? You're joking.
So sadly, it's thumbs down for this one. To make it easy, there's far more explanation and background on a biofuelswatch page, with all the links you could want for evidence, and a well reasoned 'objection' to copy and
paste if you haven't time or confidence to construct your own.
A similar application by the same company (under a slightly different name) was turned down by the Weymouth and Portland Council on Sept 16 - apparently due to the same concerns about the impacts of palm oil planting. Let's make sure that Bristol's planners are equally well informed.