Europe and Central Asia

The Black Book of Bioenergy


BirdLife Europe and Central Asia, in collaboration with Transport & Environment, is excited to announce the launch of our a new joint-publication: The Black Book of Bioenergy.

Following extensive on-the-ground investigation, and after consulting an array of local sources, we have collected shocking new evidence that exposes the great carbon con of bioenergy.

In the Black Book of Bioenergy, we present a graphic visualisation of bioenergy’s dark side – one that casts a long shadow over our efforts to tackle climate change and preserve the planet.

While some may already be familiar with the news-grabbing horror stories from Indonesia (mass clearing of tropical forests for palm oil plantations) or the USA (forest devastation in the Southern states for the lucrative pellet industry), most people will be astonished to hear that similar scenarios are playing out right here in Europe – from the forests of Eastern Slovakia and the maize field of Lower Saxony (Germany) to the riverbanks of Emilia Romagna (Italy) and the shores of the Canary Islands. The Black Book puts the spotlight on 8 such cases – all of which take place in Europe or are directly linked to European commercial or domestic markets.

At our launch party, on 22 November, award-winning Guardian journalist Arthur Neslen chaired a frank discussion with those who have witnessed these carbon crimes first-hand, and explored ways in which the EU can make sure that its upcoming bioenergy policy proposals will be green rather than green-washed.

Arthur Neslen's article in the Guardian about the Black Black Book of Bioenergy is available here: Protected forests in Europe felled to meet EU renewable targets – report  (24 November 2016)

You can download the low resolution PDF here or read it in all it's digital glory below. We recommend clicking on "click to read" in the center of the thumbnail to view the publication in full-screen mode. The publication is also available in Polish language

Finally, you can also watch our video Bioenergy: the big carbon con of our time? on YouTube or below.




Stichting BirdLife Europe gratefully acknowledges financial support from the European Commission. All content and opinions expressed on the ECA section of this website are solely those of Stichting BirdLife Europe