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Bioenergy industry welcomes EU Taxonomy inclusion

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The bioenergy industry has welcomed the EU Taxonomy, which classifies sustainable bioenergy as an environmentally sustainable activity.

Released by the European Commission, the EU Taxonomy Climate Delegated Act aims to support sustainable investment by making it clearer which economic activities most contribute to meeting the EU’s environmental objectives. On 21 April, the College of Commissioners reached a political agreement on the text. The Delegated Act will be formally adopted at the end of May.

The US Industrial Pellet Association (USIPA) said the classification of bioenergy in the EU Taxonomy underscores its ‘indispensable role’ in the EU’s low carbon energy transition.

“We welcome the EU’s new rules on taxonomy, in particular, that sustainable bioenergy use for power and heat production is recognised as making a ‘substantial contribution’ to climate mitigation,” said Seth Ginther, USIPA’s executive director.

“Requirements for sustainable bioenergy includes in the taxonomy are also consistent with the strict, harmonised EU-wide sustainability criteria that was introduced in RED II just two years ago. This decision ensures the EU only sources biomass that makes a positive contribution to the climate and healthy forest ecosystems.

“The upcoming revision of RED II should follow a similar approach to ensure a sufficient and secure supply of sustainable biomass that multiple analysis show will be needed to achieve the EU’s climate ambitions for 2030 and beyond.

“We stand ready to support EU Member States and the European Parliament, and share our expertise during their work on the new rules.”

Valdis Dombrovskis, executive vice-president for an economy that works for people, commented: “Europe was an early leader in reforming the financial system to support investments for climate change. Today, we are taking a leap forward with the first-ever climate taxonomy, which will help companies and investors to know whether their investments and activities are really green. This will be essential if we are to mobilise private investment in sustainable activities and make Europe climate-neutral by 2050.

“This is a ground-breaking step for which we have consulted far and wide. We left no stone unturned in seeking a balanced, science-based outcome. We are also proposing improved rules on sustainability reporting by companies. By developing European standards, we will build on and contribute to international initiatives.”