Press Release Provided by Western Agricultural Processors Association
On September 15th, Association President/CEO Roger Isom testified before the Governing Board of the San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District on the issue of biomass and the air district’s efforts to eliminate agricultural burning completely by 2025. Isom reminded the Governing Board “while the incentives to chip and incorporate prunings have grown tremendously and is very successful, the funding is not in perpetuity, and long-term solutions are needed. We need the California Air Resources Board, the Air District and industry to reinvigorate the Clean Biomass Collaborative and help find long term solutions like building operating plants that can provide renewable diesel, cellulosic ethanol, biochar or electricity.” Isom also took the opportunity to blast Valley Public Radio for providing misleading information to the public and doing the general public a disservice by not providing a complete picture of the biomass problem during a recent series of air quality hit pieces on the San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District. Specifically, Isom thanked the Air District for highlighting the impact of the closure of the 15 of the 20 operating biomass plants in the San Joaquin Valley over the past 20 years. Without those plants, growers have no option but to burn. This fact was left out of the Valley Public Radio news stories and lead the reader to believe that agriculture was not doing its part to help clean the air.