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NGOs demand end to support for bioenergy made from forest biomass

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This month, the EU Commission will release its RePowerEU Strategy, aiming to reduce the EU’s dependence on Russian fossil fuels. This includes building more fossil gas infrastructure, leading to stranded assets, reactivating or extending the operation of coal, burning more trees or crops for energy – which will increase emissions and pollution compared to fossil fuels and harm food security. 

A statement from NGO BirdLife read: “While we stand ready to help in efforts to reduce EU dependence on fossil fuel imports, we call upon the European Commission to ensure that, in its final RePowerEU strategy, this doesn’t come at the cost of fighting climate change, species loss and food security globally. 

"Costs that would be incurred by continuing or even increasing our reliance on crop-based biofuels, by opening up biodiversity set aside areas for additional farming or increasing pressure on our forests through more production of energy from burning wood. 

“We expect RePowerEU to provide a clear strategy for the EU to shift away from its dependence on fossil fuels altogether and in particular to not fall into the trap of replacing Russian imports with fuels from other authoritarian regimes or economies which will only continue to perpetuate Europe’s energy dependence."