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- Apr 2021
The so-called “whole trees” clause was designed to protect forests, ensuring that only things such as branches and waste wood are burned in Europe’s biomass incinerators. In December last year, in response to a draft of the European Commission’s sustainable taxonomy, Copa Cogeca insisted: “the economic utilization of ‘whole trees’ for the production of bioenergy proves to be necessary.” A leaked version of the final text, released last week, shows that the “whole trees” clause has been dropped. In the same document – obtained by Unearthed using EU transparency rules – the farming lobby also asked the Commission to remove a line that described biofuels as “transitional” — meaning that they would be viewed as playing a role in the move away from fossil fuels and towards fully renewable energy sources, but would not be seen as a long-term solution.