Tell Governor Baker: Don’t Prop Up Polluters With Our Clean Energy $$!
Please send a letter urging Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker to withdraw his proposed rule changes that will poison the air and undermine our state’s clean energy goals by paving the way for a massive wood-burning biomass power plant to be built in East Springfield.
The people in Springfield already breathe some of the most polluted air in the nation. One in five of our children has asthma and Springfield has been named “the asthma capital of the country.” For more than a decade, we have been battling the proposed Palmer Renewable Energy wood-burning power plant which would make our unhealthy air quality even worse and disproportionately impact low-income communities of color.
While Governor Baker claims to be concerned about air pollution, climate change, and racial justice, his Department of Energy Resources announced in December that it would roll back Massachusetts’ science-based standards and allow dirty and inefficient wood-burning power plants like the one proposed in Springfield to qualify for millions of dollars a year in renewable energy subsidies. The Palmer developers themselves have said that these subsidies are the lifeline they need to begin construction.
Far from being climate friendly, the Palmer biomass plant would emit nearly a ton of carbon dioxide a minute and burn more than 400,000 tons of wood per year. It would also greatly add to the pollution burdens in Springfield and surrounding areas from stack emissions, increased truck traffic, ash disposal, and dust. The overall project would release hundreds of tons of harmful air pollutants each year, including heavy metals, nitrogen oxide, and fine particulate matter (PM 2.5), which has been linked to a wide range of health effects, including increased risk of death from Covid-19. Bending the rules for this plant to move forward is unconscionable.
Springfield residents will be affected first and worst by this proposal, but we all lose if we allow our clean energy dollars to support false climate solutions like biomass energy. Tell Governor Baker that Massachusetts doesn’t want him to roll back our renewable energy standards - fill out this form to send him a letter with our requests!