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Brussels, 16 July 2008

Commission launches consultation on requirements for a sustainability scheme for biomass for energy purposes

The European Commission is inviting all stakeholders, including energy companies, project developers, equipment manufacturers, government services, agricultural and forest industry, environmental NGOs and all other interested stakeholders, including from outside the EU, to help identify the need to develop at EU level sustainability criteria for biomass for energy purposes.

On 23 January 2008 the Commission made a far-reaching package of energy and climate change related proposals including a draft directive to promote renewable energy and increase its share to 20% by 2020[1]. As part of the proposal for a Directive on the promotion of energy from renewable sources, the Commission developed a scheme to ensure that only sustainable produced biofuels and bioliquids would count towards the EU's renewable energy targets.

The Commission also undertook to report on requirements for a sustainability scheme for energy uses of biomass other than biofuels and bioliquids by 31 December 2010. The on-line consultation is aimed at providing the Commission with stakeholder views on the need for a biomass sustainability scheme and specific key principles and criteria to be developed at EU level to ensure that the use of biomass for energy purposes avoids environmental risks. The consultation will be open until 30 September 2008.

More information on the consultation and the questionnaire itself is available here.


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