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Woody Biomasses are not true Renewable Energies and they are estimated to cause in Italy about 18-20,000 premature deaths each year

Global Virtual Summit on Environmental Health

May 17, 2021 | Webinar

Ugo Corrieri

ISDE-International Society Doctors for the Environment, Italy

ScientificTracks Abstracts: Res. Rev. J Ecol. Environ. Sci


Using forest biomasses as a renewable fuel causes loss of urban trees and widespread forest devastation and significantly increases greenhouse gas emissions. Burning woody biomass emits great amounts of CO2; its carbon neutrality is based on the assumption that an equivalent CO2 will be sequestered by regrowth of new trees. But it can take decades to over a century to replace the trees that were cut, provided they are replanted. This time lag is not factored and wood-fired power plants emit more CO2 per unit of energy generated than coal plants, heavily aggravating climate change. Moreover, biomasses cause serious environmental, social and public health impacts. In Italy there are from 18,000 to 20,000 premature deaths a year just for the pm2.5 emitted by the combustion of all woody biomasses - from stoves, fireplaces and pellet boilers to biomass power plants - and the official ISPRA and GSE 2017 data show that about 7% of them, that is about 1400 Italian citizens, are prematurely killed every year only by the PM2.5 issued by the biomass power plants ufficially financed by public money. Other health damages are caused by dioxins, furans, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, mercury, arsenic emitted by wood combustion. Last but not least, bioenergies are very expensive and not very effective for producing energy. They are sustained only because they brings lucrative public subsidies. Scientific evidence shows that it is mandatory to stop burning and strongly safeguard both virgin forests and urban trees, which protect our well-being and counteract climate change.


Ugo Corrieri, M.D., psychiatrist, psychotherapist, sexologist, hypnotist, was born on June 15, 1953 and worked from 1980 in the pubic psychiatry service of Grosseto (Italy), where he was Chief of the Psychiatric Ward from 1998 to 2008, and then (2008-2016) Chief of the whole Service for addicted patients. Trained also in Tropical Medicine (Brescia, 1996) and in Tropical Surgery (Rome, 1997), he worked as a volunteer in Africa (Niger, 1997). Retired from the National Public Service in November 2016, he is currently Professor in a Family Therapy Institute (SRPF, Rome) and Health Director of a private psychiatric residential facility in Perugia. President of Italian Society of Forest Therapy and Coordinator for Central Italy of ISDE - Doctors for the Environment, he conducts periodic conferences and has published scientific articles about healing trees, forest therapy and the damages of the combustion of woody biomasses.

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