UN Sustainable Energy for All announces global bioenergy initiative

UN FAO, Roundtable on Sustainable Biomaterials, Bloomberg New Energy Finance, Carbon War Room, KLM, Novozymes and the UN Foundation partner to scale up the development and deployment of sustainable bioenergy solutions to meet the global need for sustainable energy.

As part of the 2nd Annual Sustainable Energy for All (SE4ALL) Forum, a new multi-stakeholder coalition, co-chaired by the UN Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO) and the Roundtable on Sustainable Biomaterials (RSB), announced its intention to speed up the development and deployment of sustainable bioenergy in order to contribute to meeting the SE4ALL goals of doubling the global use of renewable energy and ensuring universal energy access by 2030.

Among its key goals is delivering bioenergy options that are environmentally, socially, and economically sustainable, with a focus on emerging markets and rural communities in developing countries. Supported by Novozymes, the world's largest technology provider to biofuel industries, and the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB), FAO and RSB are co-chairing the sustainable bioenergy effort.

The partnership will engage in dialogue with national governments, civil society, and the private sector to identify opportunities for the further development of sustainable bioenergy, while taking into consideration appropriate agricultural resources, sound environmental management, economic growth rates, energy and food security needs, financing mechanisms, and policy frameworks.

As such, the Sustainable Bioenergy High Impact Opportunity (HIO) will pursue three objectives: 1) knowledge enhancement and information sharing; 2) policy support; and 3) deployment support. Specifically, the HIO will seek novel means of financing sustainable energy access and renewable fuels projects across the globe.

Kandeh Yumkella, Special Representative of the Secretary-General and chief executive of SE4All, says: 'Sustainably managed bioenergy can potentially provide viable alternatives to fossil fuels in a variety of areas, yet it is not widely understood and is held back by regulatory uncertainties and lack of finance. This valuable initiative aims to break through those barriers, bringing the public and private sectors together to help sustainable biofuels make a full contribution to the targets of Sustainable Energy for All.'

RSB Chair Barbara Bramble sates: 'RSB sees SE4All as a key framework to promote sustainable bioenergy at scale and believe that it will lead to the advancement of sustainable production on the ground supporting rural development, workers' rights, biodiversity protection and reduction of greenhouse gas emissions in line with international best practice outlined in the RSB standards. We are really delighted to see the initiative "kick-off" and look forward to working with our members and partners to make it a success.'

To achieve its goals, the founding partners have assembled a Steering Committee consisting of institutions and corporations internationally recognised for their leadership in sustainable bioenergy policy, technology, and best business practices. The Steering Committee will provide guidance and oversee the work of High Impact Initiatives and Projects that are at the forefront of sustainable bioenergy development and deployment.

All types of bioenergy projects are being promoted, including renewable biomass for clean cooking solutions; on-farm bioenergy production to boost agricultural yield and reduce post-harvest losses; distributed electricity production using sustainable biomass from forestry and agriculture coproducts; electricity and fuels from municipal solid waste (MSW); cellulosic ethanol for clean cooking and transportation; and sustainable aviation biofuels.


SOURCE: Roundtable on Sustainable Biomaterials

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