Support for Party for the Animals proposal to stop importing Russian biomass wood

20 April 2022

Coal and biomass power plants in the Netherlands burn around 100,000 shredded Russian trees per month. Which is disastrous for our climate and good for Putin’s war chest, according to the Dutch Party for the Animals. Its proposal to ban the import of wooden biomass from Russia was adopted by a majority of the House of Representatives last week.

'Billions of subsidies are still being provided for biomass, including for the import of wood from Russia. That’s how Russia’s war chest gets filled, which is of course inexcusable. It’s good that a majority of the House recognises this and wants us to stop doing so,' says Member of Parliament for the Party for the Animals and proposal instigator Lammert van Raan.

Earlier, the Party for the Animals submitted a proposal to immediately stop the import of Russian coal, oil and gas. And 120 human rights and environmental organisations have also called for an import ban on wooden biomass from Russia. These calls are in line with attempts being made across Europe to dry up the flow of money to Russia and thus slow down the war in Ukraine.

From an environmental and climate point of view as well, the Party for the Animals is strongly opposed to wooden biomass as so-called sustainable energy. Burning wood requires large-scale logging and polluting transport, and it releases particulate matter and other unhealthy substances into the air. 'Cutting down and burning trees causes even more CO2 emissions than burning coal,' says Van Raan. Subsidising wooden biomass is therefore unjustifiable at a time when, according to the most recent IPCC report, immediate, large-scale climate action is required to prevent disastrous global warming.

Earlier, the Party for the Animals already achieved that no new subsidies for biomass will be issued. And thanks to a proposal by the Party for the Animals, it will soon be measured how polluting biomass really is. And last autumn, the party submitted the Climate Act 1.5. If it is adopted, biomass plants will most likely also come to an end.