Activist countries

Protests in four countries against Vatenfall biomass power plants

Activists from four countries demonstrate on Wednesday against the investments and use of biomass by the energy company Vattenfall. According to the Clean Air Committee (CSL), around 500 protesters took to the streets in the Netherlands, Sweden, Germany and the UK.

In Diemen, 50 activists will occupy the bridge in front of Vattenfall’s head office from the morning so that no trucks and staff can access the building. According to CSL president Fenna Swart, it is clear that there is no longer any support in society for biomass. “The continuation definitely means the end of Vattenfall’s credibility with respect to its sustainability intentions.”

Environmental organization Protect the Forest Sweden will ask questions about the use of biomass at Vattenfall’s shareholders’ meeting in the Swedish municipality of Solna. The organization describes biomass as a form of “greenwashing”, while the climate crisis “urges us urgently” to begin the energy transition. In London, activists will protest at a conference on biomass, and in Berlin they will demonstrate outside a Vattenfall power station.

Environmental organizations had previously sent Vattenfall a letter asking it to stop using biomass. Last week, the energy company said it believed biomass could make an important contribution to the energy transition.

Energy Minister Rob Jetten said on Friday that Cabinet would stop subsidizing heat generation from biomass. Grants already awarded will not be withdrawn. Thus, the subsidy that Vattenfall received for the biomass power plant in Diemen will also remain in place.