24 Aug 2021

Sustainable biomass availability in the EU, to 2050

The aim of this report is to provide an estimation of the sustainable biomass potential availability in the European Union and the UK by 2030 and 2050 and to provide an evaluation of the advanced biofuel potential. The work presented covers only domestic (EU27 & UK) feedstocks of agricultural, forest and waste origin included in Annex IX of RED II1 (Part A and B). A short overview of the potential for imports and algae, based on other studies has been included as an Annex. Food and feed crops, and other sustainable feedstocks accepted by RED but not included in Annex IX, are not included in this study.

Three scenarios have been analysed: i) Low biomass mobilisation, ii) improved mobilisation in selected countries due to improvements in cropping and forest management practices and iii) enhanced availability through Research and Innovation (R&I) measures as well as improved mobilisation due to improvements in cropping and forest management practices. The study analyses firstly the sustainable biomass availability for all markets and then estimates the amount that can be available for bioenergy after excluding the so far known demand from non-energy sectors.

Following, the study presents the status of the various technologies and value chains based on their maturity for market deployment and assesses the potential production of sustainable advanced biofuels for 2030 and 2050 on the basis of the biomass potentials calculated in the previous part. The maturity of the biomass conversion technologies in 2030 can be discussed with a certain degree of confidence however, for 2050 it is difficult to make assumptions on the status of the various biomass conversion technologies.

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