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Biomass Energy

Environment Food and Rural Affairs written question – answered on 2nd November 2001.

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Photo of Tom Levitt Tom Levitt Labour, High Peak

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what assistance and opportunities exist for farmers to diversify their land use towards growing crops for the production of energy from biomass.

Photo of Michael Meacher Michael Meacher Minister (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs) (Environment)

The Energy Crops Scheme, part of the England Rural Development Programme, makes £29 million of assistance available to farmers over seven years. This includes establishment grants for short rotation coppice and miscanthus and up to 50 per cent. of set-up costs for short rotation coppice growers forming producer groups. In addition, farmers may benefit from planting grants under the Woodland Grant Scheme and the Farm Woodlands Premium Scheme, and woodland maintenance grants under the WGS. We are working closely with Government Departments and other bodies to develop market opportunities for biomass in power generation, combined heat and power and heat applications.

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