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Energy: Biomass

Volume 684: debated on Tuesday 25 July 2006

asked Her Majesty’s Government:

Which of the recommendations made by the Biomass Task Force in October 2005 are to be accepted; what the timetable will be for implementing them; and what funding will be available. [HL6931]

The majority of the 42 recommendations made by the biomass task force in October 2005 have been accepted fully or in principle. The remaining recommendations are being considered further, in some cases pending the outcome of ongoing reviews, such as the waste strategy review.

The Government have identified 65 actions to take forward the recommendations of the biomass task force; most of these actions should be implemented by April 2007. A number of actions will, by necessity, continue beyond that date, such as the five-year capital grant scheme for biomass boilers and CHP systems.

The majority of the measures proposed by the biomass task force require no additional funding. Among those actions that do, funding has been announced for the five-year capital grant scheme of £10 million to £15 million over the first two years. This funding will also support an additional round of the bio-energy infrastructure scheme. The level of funding for the continuation of support for the establishment of energy crops under the new rural development programme for England has yet to be finalised; it will be subject to EU and Government decisions on rural development funding.