Europe and Central Asia
10 Jun 2020

What is the role of bioenergy in a decarbonised Europe?

By Luke Edwards, Climate Change and Land Use Policy Officer

With its proposed European Green Deal, the European Union aims at becoming the first carbon neutral continent by mid-century. This objective will require deep transformations in the way we consume, move and produce. The energy sector must be subject to such a transformation, as it must become fossil-free and clean, based on sustainable renewable technologies.

This paper discusses the role of bioenergy in the context of a zero-emissions roadmap for the EU. It is based on the analysis of thirteen scenarios that look into pathways to achieve zero emissions by mid-century. Based on this analysis, T&E and Birdlife conclude that there are many uncertainties on the role that bioenergy can play in decarbonisation of the economy and that the potential for sustainable bioenergy will remain limited. This is mainly due to a lack of harmonisation among the scenarios regarding sustainability. Instead, Europe should rely on clean and sustainable renewable energy sources such as wind and solar.

Stichting BirdLife Europe gratefully acknowledges financial support from the European Commission. All content and opinions expressed on these pages are solely those of Stichting BirdLife Europe. The European Commission is not responsible for any use that may be made of the information it contains.