The proposal of the EU department for climate policy Change in biofuel targets for Europe has created great resistance within the agricultural and bioenergy sectors. 16 associations reject the hasty adjustment of the targets towards second-generation biofuels. The joint action is also the long-awaited signal that the industries concerned will work together even more in the future. A great success! Above all, the highly differentiated bioenergy industry (gaseous, liquid and solid bioenergy) has been suffering from the conflicts of interest between the expansion of the individual bioenergy sources for several years. Despite the existing competitive situation, the Bioenergy community to become more aware of their shared roots and goals so that they can defend themselves against growing criticism together. Community promotion of the great potential of bioenergy should also be taken more seriously.
The full statement follows as a joint declaration by the agricultural and bioenergy industries.
The European Commission's plans to change the Renewable Energy Directive and the Fuel Quality Directive represent an irresponsible U-turn. With the planned de facto stopping of the use of Biofuels and bioenergy from renewable raw materials would block the switch to a supply of renewable energies. Due to its storability, bioenergy is a central element for the reliable provision of electricity, heat and fuels from renewable energy sources.
That is why the signing associations and organizations of the EU Commission, Council and Parliament demand:
1. Stick to the strategy of "decarbonization"
That means lowering greenhouse gases from fossil energy through the use of biofuels and bioenergy. This means a strong incentive for further greenhouse gas optimization of bioenergy. The industry expressly acknowledges that the origin of biomass from sustainable production must be secured. This must also apply to imports.
2. Rejection of an iLUC factor
The introduction of a iLUC factor as a surcharge on local land use is rejected. In order to effectively prevent indirect climate pollution caused by illegal deforestation etc., national protective measures in third countries and international agreements on sustainable biomass imports are required.
3. No disadvantage for "conventional biofuels"
There must be no excessive preference for residual and waste materials by double or even four times the credit. The multiple counting would ultimately lead to an increased consumption of fossil oil because the quantitative use of biofuels is thereby severely restricted.
The signing associations and organizations are committed to the priority of food production ("Food First") in agriculture and agriculture. This is guaranteed for biofuels such as biodiesel from rapeseed and bioethanol from sugar beet or cereals, since these biofuels are produced in conjunction with valuable feed and food. "Plate or tank" is a media conflict in Europe, not a real one.
Bioenergy has become an important element in the strategic direction of energy supply in many EU member states. The funding policy framework and national action programs were geared towards this. In recent years, billions of euros have been invested and, at the same time, large-scale research and development activities have been started. Most recently, the introduction of sustainability certification for biofuels was a milestone in securing the origin and greenhouse gas reduction in open international markets for biomass.
The U-turn envisaged by the EU Commission would destroy the confidence of the economy in investments in the bioenergy sector. New investments in low-emission biofuels would be blocked because a changed regime with ILUC factors and an arbitrarily excessive allowance for waste and residues would not provide a reliable basis for long-term investments. In reality, a clear separation between residues on the one hand and food raw materials on the other hand is not possible.
In view of the further shortage of oil (peak oil) and the environmental damage associated with its extraction, the bioenergy including biofuels in the long run even without government funding. Established value chains and market access must not be destroyed. European and national policies should continue to focus on sustainable bioenergy production.
Berlin, October 5, 2012
- Working group of the landowners' associations
- Association of German Forest Owners' Associations (AGDW)
- Bundesverband BioEnergie eV (BBE)
- Federal Association of the German Bioethanol Industry (BDBe)
- Federal Association for Renewable Energy (BEE)
- Federal Association of Decentralized Oil Mills e. V. (BDOel)
- Centrales agricultural commodity marketing and energy network CARMEN eV
- German Farmers' Association (DBV)
- Trade Association Biogas eV
- Fördergesellschaft Renewable Energies eV (FEE)
- Wood energy trade association Baden-Württemberg eV
- Industrieverband Haus-, Heiz- und Küchentechnik eV (HKI)
- Union for the Promotion of Oil and Protein Plants eV (ufop)
- Association of the German Biofuel Industry eV (VDB)
- Association of the Oilseed Processing Industry in Germany eV (OVID)
- Association of German Biomass Heating Plants (VDBH)