The EIBI was launched at the SET-Plan conference in November 2010 as a result of an intense work on common objectives, a roadmap and an action plan between industry, Member States and the European Commission. The major milestones of the EIBI underlined at the conference are among others:
- the 2020 Technology Roadmap included in the 2009 SET-Plan Communication,
- the Implementation plan for 2010-2012, agreement on Key Performance Indicators,
- mapping of existing EU and national projects,
- publishing of a Call for Expression of Interest, which is to support the 2012 ERA-NET Plus for demonstration of advanced bioenergy technologies.
Representatives from different bioenergy sectors were present, revealing the state of play in their fields. The success stories were showcased, such as BioDME project (see a video), BioLiq project, BioLyfe or Proesa technology . Perspectives of bioenergy use in both the transportation sector (including road, aviation and maritime) and the Heat & Power (CHP) sector were presented. Claude Turmes delivered a keynote speech on the urgency of speeding up the development of bioenergy technologies. Already in March, hosting a Biomass Futures event, he underlined that biomass sustainable supply is a subject challenged by the lack of data, and at the same time a complicated and sophisticated issue, which can only be adressed by biomass management in the future. Turmes then said that there needs to be more thought on how to set up a policy framework to move over to 2nd generation biomass, not penalising the previous investments in 1st generation technologies.
Even though much is being done in the area of bioenergy and the SET-Plan is acknowledged to be the technology pillar of the EU energy and climate policy, it remains clear that many barriers to implementation remain. Throughout the event it was highlighted that the key issues to focus on are financing large-scale demonstration projects and first-mover commercial plants as well as ensuring stable and predictable regulatory environment. These, followed by research on feedstock and refining processes, making public and private investments risk-free, work on new incentives, commitment to robust international sustainability criteria and local green growth coalitions would lead to strengthening the business case for bioenergy in the future. The need to create a bioeconomy panel to enhance synergies between bioenergy policies was mentioned as well.
“It is very important to try to aid the lack of clear real-time answers to critical questions about bioenergy and the sustainable role it can play in future energy systems. Up-to-date, quantitative information for the supply and demand dynamics are of vital importance to bring about the development of policy frameworks and binding targets,” said Joanna Ciesielska (Bellona Europa), commenting after the conference. “Increasing resource efficiency by fulfilling both material and energy needs from the same feedstock is a very important prospect. Until now, energy and material uses of biomass have been dealt with separately in policy making, which makes a significant space for synergies in the future and a prospect of using bioenergy in a more efficient and sustainable way,” she added.
All the presentations will be available on the event’s website in the nearest future.