Sunday, April 15, 2012

Bioenergy in the European Energy Technology Plan

Today’s post highlights the Industrial Bioenergy Initiative included in the European Union’s Strategic Energy Technology Plan (SET-Plan) under the slogan “Boosting the contribution of Bioenergy to the EU climate and energy ambitions”.

The term Bioenergy is used to designate the production of heat, electricity and fuels from biological resources, including dedicated crops, agricultural and forestry residues, and municipal and industrial wastes.

“The SET-Plan Bioenergy Initiative focuses on innovative value chains which are not yet commercially available, and which could bring significant contribution to the bioenergy markets by large scale deployment (large single units or larger number of smaller units), whilst complying with the sustainability requirements of the Renewable Energy Directive (2009/28/EC).” A specific complementary activity is also proposed to tackle the critical issue of biomass supply.

The Industrial Bioenergy Initiative will promote public-private partnerships to leverage financing and risk management of projects for the implementation of demonstration plants and of first commercial units of new value chains (flagship). The demonstration projects are expected to produce their first commercial contribution by 2015-2020.

Projects will be selected based on different criteria, including their innovative nature: at least one “technology brick” or the integration of “technology bricks” within the considered value chain should not have been deployed at demonstration or commercial scale before. The seven value chains listed below will be considered:

a) Thermochemical pathways
1: Synthetic liquid fuels and/or hydrocarbons and blending components through gasification.
2: Bio-methane and other bio-synthetic gaseous fuels through gasification.
3: High efficiency heat & power generation through thermochemical conversion
4: Intermediate bioenergy carriers through techniques such as pyrolysis and torrefaction

b) Biochemical pathways
5: Ethanol and higher alcohols from ligno-cellulosic feedstock through chemical and biological processes
6: Hydrocarbons through biological and/or chemical synthesis from biomass containing carbohydrates
7: Bioenergy carriers produced by micro-organisms (algae, bacteria) from CO2 and sunlight

c) Complementary measures and activities
8: Biomass feedstock for bioenergy
9: Set of activities on longer term R&D&D on emerging and innovative bioenergy value chains

Source: European Industrial Bioenergy Initiative, Implementation Plan 2010 – 2012, European Union, 2012.

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