Please object to the Restart of Redbank Power Station by burning 850,000 tonnes of native forests obtained from landclearing

With your help we were successful in our campaigns to stop Singleton Council approving Verdant’s DA as a variation, convince the court to reject Verdant’s appeal, and the 2,900 submissions helped convince the Federal Government to prohibit wood from native forests being eligible for Large-scale Generation Certificates (LGCs) under the Renewable Energy Target (RET). But this monster is still not dead. Its back with an intent to feed the furnaces with wood from clearing thousands of hectares a year.


Verdant Earth Technologies Limited is proposing on restarting the disused Redbank Power Station near Singleton by burning 850,000 tonnes of biomass from native forests each year. The original intent was to obtain the biomass from intensified logging operations, now they are saying it will mostly come from landclearing.  This will require significant increases in the rate of landclearing, at a time when we need to stop it. There is nothing ecologically sustainable about clearing tens of thousands of hectares of native vegetation inhabited by millions of native animals, and converting it into carbon dioxide to worsen climate heating. To make matters worse they are claiming the 1.3 million tonnes of CO2 released when the wood is burnt doesn’t really exist, claiming it is clean and green because there are no emissions what-so-ever. 

If this gets approved it will herald a new wave of clearing and environmental destruction as vast areas of native forests are burnt for electricity under the pretense that its clean energy because the millions of tonnes of carbon dioxide released doesn’t exist.

Please take a moment to make a submission saying you object to the proposal to use biomass to generate electricity at Redbank, before April 11th. Use your own words to make it a unique submission – it can be as short as you like, it’s the sentiment that counts.

The drag is that you have to log in to make a submission, then you can tick the box that you object, enter a paragraph as to why you object, and if you want attach a submission. ITS WORTH THE EFFORT FOR THE FUTURE OF OUR FORESTS

NEFA's submission is here:

Here are dot points, some of which you may wish to rearrange and incorporate:

  • The forests of eastern NSW are part of one of the world’s 35 biodiversity hotspots because of their exceptional species endemism and extensive habitat loss.
  • There is nothing ecologically sustainable about clearing tens of thousands of hectares of native vegetation inhabited by millions of native animals in the midst of a biodiversity crisis, and converting it into carbon dioxide to worsen climate heating.
  • Landclearing and associated habitat fragmentation are the single greatest threat to biodiversity in NSW, and yet most clearing is unapproved and the approval process requires no surveys to identify habitat of threatened species.
  • Landclearing and logging are not in the public interest – they do not have a social licence, and do not require public consultation through a Development Application process like other developments on private land.
  • Land clearing has rapidly escalated over the past decade, making NSW part of one of the of the world’s 24 deforestation fronts.
  • To supply the 850,000 tonnes of biomass required each year, will require a major increase in the rate of land clearing, especially in the Hunter valley and on the tablelands.
  • Creating a market for large volumes of biomass will provide an economic incentive to clear land that would otherwise not have been cleared.
  • Land clearing needs to stop, not expand.
  • Claims that over four years 56,000 ha of biomass crops will be planted to provide 70% of feedstock have not been planned, are not credible and unlikely to eventuate.
  • It is recognized that the current proposal does not include logging residues, though the other sources of biomass are so poorly assessed and unlikely to provide the feedstock required, that there is a high risk that a variation to include logging residues will be made soon after approval.
  • The pretense that burning 850,000 tonnes of biomass for electricity every year will result in no emissions of CO2, and is thus clean energy, is a nonsense.
  • The power station will release over 1.3 million tonnes of CO2 each year, with increased emissions from debris and soils at the clearing sites, and from processing and transporting woodchips.
  • Burning wood for electricity is far more polluting than coal.
  • We need to reduce our emissions of CO2, not dramatically increase them as intended by this proposal
  • The use of solar and wind as alternative power sources need to be considered, rather than just comparing the proposal to coal.

Showing 2 reactions

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  • Marg Hope
    commented 2024-04-08 16:54:33 +1000
    This is madness! Unsustainable and unnecessary! Stop all native forest logging!
    BIOMASS is not renewable!
  • Yasmin Kellner
    commented 2024-04-08 16:36:13 +1000
    I object strongly to this proposal when we have wind and solar power. We need to be funding these alternative and renewable sources of power and not continue with the outdated and polluting methods we have used in the past. To go ahead would be utter madness and an insult to the coming generations.