Bioenergy Europe’s latest Statistical Report is now available

The Bioenergy Europe Statistical Report 2018 provides accurate, up-to-date information on the overall EU energy system, the current state of play of bio-heat and bio-electricity, the availability and dynamics of bioenergy demand and supply, and much more.

Since its debut in 2007, Bioenergy Europe’s Statistical Report has provided an in-depth overview of the bioenergy sector across EU-28. Full of new statistics and findings, the 2018 Report provides unique data on the dynamics of the European bioenergy market. It aims to help the industry, decision-makers, investors and bioenergy professionals to better assess the situation of bioenergy in Europe.

This year, the Full Statistical Report is offered free of charge. Here’s a glimpse of some of the Key Findings.

Position of bioenergy in EU-28

Bioenergy today accounts for 63.3% of the renewable energy consumption, thus representing the main renewable energy source by far. While the other sources of renewable energy are growing, bioenergy looks set to remain the most important renewable source of energy for decades to come and will be essential to keep the global rise of temperature below critical levels.

Unique position

Bioenergy is the only renewable source able to provide power, heat and transport, which makes it an important contributor to the decarbonisation of each sector of our energy system.

Feedstock used

Bioenergy comes mainly from three streams:

  • Forestry: Forestry and industry residues, thinnings and forest management
  • Agriculture: primary agricultural and food industry residues, dedicated energy crops
  • Waste: municipal solid and organic waste

To date, forest biomass is the main source for bioenergy production. Agricultural biomass, however, used to produce biofuels, biogas or direct heat and power has a bright potential ahead.

Pellet: A booming market

The growth of the pellet market in recent years, particularly within the domestic heating segment, is driven by the rapid expansion of certifications dedicated to product quality, chief among them the world-leading scheme ENplus®. By controlling threshold values for parameters such as calorific value, moisture content or fine particles, schemes such as ENplus® ensure a greater homogeneity of the wood pellets. Seven years after its creation, in 2018 ENplus® celebrated the milestone of 10 million tonnes of certified pellets produced in one year.

Role in improving energy security

By being dependent on other countries for its energy supply, the EU is weakening its geopolitical influence. This became evident during the recent Ukraine-Russia gas crisis. Most bioenergy fuels are local, stimulating modern economy dynamics and jobs in rural areas where these are mostly needed.

Versatility of bioenergy

To date, most of the bioenergy is consumed in the heat sector, mainly for residential heating. However, due to challenges linked to the decarbonization of transport and electricity, bioenergy is expected to play a growing role in these two sectors. In the transport sector, biofuels are expected to be further deployed in segments where electrification is still a challenge (such as aviation). In the power sector, increasingly powered by variable renewable sources of energy, bioenergy is expected to provide a stable and secure power supply.

Biopower, a flexible source of electricity

Biomass for power and CHP (combined heat and power) production is expected to remain an important source of energy in the future. The power system, increasingly based on intermittent renewable sources of energy such as wind and sun, will need a dispatchable and flexible supply of power: welcome biomass.

Some of Bioenergy Europe’s overall messages:

To fully recognise synergies with other renewables, several developments are needed.

  • Recognise the role of flexible renewables to stabilise the power system and secure electricity supply, allowing for a full transition to renewables in the power sector (including capacity markets);
  • Create a level playing field with variable renewables by integrating balancing and transmission costs as well as the value of dispatchability and security of supply in the costs of energy, or by rewarding these services;
  • Support research and development in plant and fuel flexibility and invest in demonstration projects of fuels and technologies;
  • Incentivise combinations with other renewables to allow biomass CHP to provide seasonal balancing.

“Because bioenergy is the only renewable source of energy able to provide direct heat, power and transport fuels, it is a very important source for the energy transition, offering solutions to decarbonise sectors where the alternatives are limited.”

Download the Key Findings  of the 2018 Bioenergy Europe Statistical Report.

1 comment

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  1. Hans De Keulenaer

    Let me comment on the phrase ¨Bioenergy is the only renewable source able to provide power, heat and transport, which makes it an important contributor to the decarbonisation of each sector of our energy system.¨

    Avoiding the semantic quagmire of sources, carriers, primary energy, final energy, delivered energy, commercial energy and energy services, I’ll suffice to note that also electricity and hydrogen can provide a single system to support electricity, heating/cooling and transport services.

    DecarbEurope is about smart systems combining the best of these worlds of electricity, heat and transport through bioenergy, electricity, hydrogen and other system solutions.


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