Archive for the ‘Subsidies’ Category

Dogwood Alliance has launched a sign on letter for US citizens to demand that Members of Congress act to stop the tax rebate payments to the paper industry.
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A group of US NGOs has written to the Senate Committee on Finance to demand action on stopping the massive tax rebate to pulp and paper companies, which are supposed to be for using “alternative fuels” but in the case of the paper industry are for business as usual.
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The paper industry often claims to be green. This story from the US reveals that the paper industry has one goal above everything else: making a profit. The environment is irrelevant to the industry, provided that goal is met.
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Pulpmillwatch

By Chris Lang (January 2008):

A recent article by Barnaby Drake in the World Rainforest Movement Bulletin outlines some of the subsidies that Gunns receives from the government.

One of these comes in the form of Managed Investment Services Companies. These companies invest in monoculture tree plantations and the government grants them tax-free status – on the grounds that the plantations are a carbon sink and carbon credits can be traded against continuing pollution. Apart from the sheer impossibility of proving that plantations are actually sinks (see, for example, Carbon Offsets and the Ghost of Frank Knight, in the Cornerhouse’s 2006 report “Carbon Trading“, page 160), the plantations will be cut down, chipped, converted to pulp, exported to Japan, China or wherever and converted to paper. Producing paper consumes huge amounts of energy. Globally, the pulp and paper industry is the fifth largest consumer of energy. Most paper ends up ultimately in landfills where it decomposes and produces methane – a far stronger greenhouse gas than carbon dioxide.

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Here’s the activity concept note that the WWF/World Bank Alliance produced in February 2006. And here’s the article I wrote about it.

By Chris Lang. Published in WRM Bulletin 110, September 2006

The World Bank/WWF Forestry Alliance is supporting the massively destructive pulp and paper industry in Indonesia, by looking for new financial mechanisms to subsidise industrial tree plantations.

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