The European Commission’s incoming president, Ursula von der Leyen, will take office on 1 November. Ahead of the new appointment, Bioenergy Europe outlined the following requests to ensure bioenergy’s role in reducing carbon emissions across the continent.
- Higher greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions reduction targets – Bioenergy Europe has asked to increase the target from 40% to 55% and to provide clear milestones and an ‘upwards review’ of the renewable target to help Europe become the first carbon-neutral continent by 2050.
- A holistic carbon price – Carbon emissions ‘must have a price’, according to the organisation. The Energy Taxation Directive should be reviewed to deliver on climate objectives and encourage a transition to clean fuels and enhanced energy efficiency. All subsidies to fossil fuels must also be halted, according to Bioenergy Europe.
- A greater role of biomass in the circular economy – By 2050, the organisation says there will be 406 million tonnes of oil equivalent of sustainable biomass available, including residues from agriculture, forestry, industry and organic waste. A suitable policy framework will take advantage of the potential on biomass, and, as a result, biomass will be used more efficiently, technologies will be improved and more feedstock grown.
- Urgent action in the heating sector – Heating accounts for half of the EU’s energy consumption, and it is currently largely dependent on fossil fuels. Bioenergy Europe is calling for a drive to replace old, polluting technologies with modern, efficient renewable technologies.
- Energy security – Bioenergy can work alongside other renewables by providing a reliable source of energy and contributing to the security of supply. Biopower’s flexibility ‘must be recognised, rewarded and included’ in energy cost calculations.
- Recognition of bioenergy as a key decarbonisation agent for industry, transport and buildings – In its final wish of the new European Commission, Bioenergy Europe claimed that modern and efficient bioenergy technologies are readily available. Research and development efforts are progressing to abate emissions, improve efficiency and fulfil new energy needs. The organisation hopes that such technologies will be politically supported until fair market conditions apply.
Bioenergy Europe will be speaking at our International Biomass Congress & Expo in Brussels on 22-23 October 2019. For more information or to register, click here.