12 December 2016 2016 10:02 AM GMT

Biofuels Industry Questions EU Commission’s Revised Renewable Energy Directive

Farmers and Industry leaders including ICSA president Patrick Kent have questioned the European Commission proposals for new legislation on clean energy which has significant implications for crop-based biofuels. Speaking following the publication of the document Mr Kent said, in strong terms: “It beggars belief that these proposals can be described as a clean energy policy when they actually undermine crop-based biofuels.” These proposals refer to the target for the crop biofuel component of EU transport fuels. It demands a reduction from 7% down to 3.8% by 2030.

Continuing Mr Kent said “Up to this point, the Commission has been supportive of biofuels yet they have now decided to reverse their policy without any scientific basis for so doing. Crop-based biofuels are good for farmers, good for the environment and good for Europe. This move today from the Commission simply defies logic and ICSA will be pressing for its immediate reconsideration.”

The EC views this introduction of a cap on the contribution of food-based biofuels; towards the EU renewable energy target, starting at 7% in 2021 and going down progressively to 3.8% in 2030; as a mechanism to minimise the Indirect Land-Use Change (ILUC) impacts.

It is also proposing to introduce a new sustainability criterion on forest biomass. It proposes an obligation on European transport fuel suppliers to provide an increasing share of renewable and low-carbon fuels, including advanced biofuels, renewable transport fuels of non-biological origin for example hydrogen, waste-based fuels and renewable electricity.

In energy terms, the level of this obligation will progressively increase from 1.5% in 2021 to 6.8 % in 2030, including at least 3.6% of advanced biofuels. Preferential rules apply to advanced aviation fuels in order to support their deployment in the aviation sector, the EC has said in a statement. It also plans to introduce national databases to ensure traceability of the fuels and mitigate the risk of fraud.

Forthcoming Events: 23rd-24th January 2017, 14th international Conference on Renewable Mobility Fuels of the Future

May 21st 2017
Russia: Abundance Of Renewables Can Fuel Growth; Quadruple Clean Energy By 2030

Russia can increase the share of renewables in its energy mix from roughly 3 percent today to more than 11 percent by 2030, according to new findings by IRENA. The growth in renewable energy use would represent nearly a fourfold increase in the share of renewables between 2014 and 2030. To implement the study’s recommendations, an annual investment of approximately USD 15 billion per year between 2015 and 2050 is required, but IRENA shows that the benefits can exceed costs when externalities related to human health and climate change are considered. According to current estimates Russia has the largest wind potential in the world.

June 26th 2017
US: Clean Energy Now Providing More Electricity Than Nuclear For The First Time

The latest issue of the U.S. Energy Information’s (EIA) “Electric Power Monthly” reveals that – for the first time since the beginning of the nuclear era – renewable energy sources are now providing a greater share of the nation’s electrical generation than nuclear power. “Renewable energy is now surpassing nuclear power, a major milestone in the transformation of the U.S. energy sector,” said Tim Judson, Executive Director of the NIRS. “This gulf will only widen over the next several years, with continued strong growth of renewables and the planned retirement of at least 7% of nuclear capacity by 2025.

June 23rd 2017
Wind Power Can Provide Energy On Coldest Days: Met Office, Imperial College

A new study by climate scientists has advanced the understanding of the potential for wind power to provide energy during the coldest spells of winter weather. The team, which involved scientists from the Met Office Hadley Centre, Imperial College London and the University of Reading, compared wind power availability with electricity demand in winter and they found an interesting result. The team found that during the highest 5% of energy demand days, one-third produce more wind power than the winter average. “The very coldest days are associated with a mix of different weather patterns, some of which produce high winds in parts of the UK.

June 18th 2017
ČEZ Enters French Wind Energy Market With 100MW Portfiolio Initiated By ABO

ABO Wind reports its largest single transaction in the company’s history to date. The project developer has sold nine wind farm projects with a total nominal capacity of about 100 megawatts to the Czech supplier ČZ. 70 percent of ČZ is owned by the Czech government and it is by its own account among the ten largest European energy suppliers. ČZ operates wind farms in several European countries – including Germany – and will now enter the French wind market in cooperation with ABO Wind.

June 7th 2017
Solar Power Exceeds Wind Installations; Can Surpass 80GW In 2017, 1TW In 2021

SolarPower Europe (SPE) has launched the ‘Global Market Outlook for Solar Power 2017-2021.’ The report confirms 2016 as another record year for solar, with global annual additions for solar growing by 50% with 76.6 GW installed. There’s now a total worldwide solar power generation capacity of 306.5 GW. James Watson, CEO of SPE said: “When looking at solar, the cost reductions experienced and predicted outstrip all other power generation technologies. Today, utility-scale solar is already cheaper than new gas, coal and nuclear power plants.”