Bioenergy Europe has welcomed the new European Industrial Strategy, which underlines the need for transformation of the European renewables sector.
In a statement, the organisation said it was 'particularly happy' that the European Commission conveyed an important message that the EU "will need a more strategic approach to renewable energy industries [...] and the supply chain underpinning them".
Bioenergy Europe commented: "We would like to emphasise that renewable energy is not just a solution to decarbonisation. It is also a dynamic sector of the economy, which development will fuel the economic growth of the EU and strengthen social cohesion."
According to the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA), from 1.2 million direct and indirect jobs in the EU today, renewable energy will create 2.7 million jobs in Europe. Bioenergy is already the biggest source of green jobs in the EU, with an estimated 703,000 jobs in the sector. Its overall turnover is worth €60.6 billion, equivalent to 0.37% of the EU's GDP.
In 2018 in the EU, at least 50,000 businesses were active in the bioenergy sector and around 74% of the technology suppliers are based in Europe, according to Bioenergy Europe. The company added: "It generates positive trade balance of approximately €5 billion. The development of bioenergy value chain provides an additional stream of revenue for local communities and creates local jobs. Its future growth is, therefore, crucial for the successful just energy transition."
Bioenergy covers 11% of the total EU industry demand. The industrial use of bioheat makes up one quarter (25%) of the final energy consumption of bioenergy. Bioheat is produced at a large scale, often in combined heat and power plants, and is often cost-competitive with fossil fuel alternatives.
Jean-Marc Jossart, Bioenergy Europe's secretary-general said: "Maintaining the technological autonomy of a strategic sector such as renewables is vital for a successful and inclusive transition to a carbon-neutral economy.
"The European Industrial Strategy should carefully shape bold and coherent measures that fully promote this distinctiveness and ensure job creation and vibrant economic growth in Europe."