Vote for high advanced biofuel target

09.09.2013, Press releases

Together with 10 organisations, companies, labour unions and green NGOs BioRefining Alliance encourage the Danish Members of the European Parliament to vote for at high advanced biofuel target when voting on biofuels this week. Read our translated letter below.

Frederiksberg the 28th of August 2013

Dear member of the European Parliament,

We are 11 Danish organisations and companies encouraging you to support a clear target for advanced biofuels (2G) when voting in the Plenary on the 10th of September.

The 10th of September 2013 (moved to the 11th, red.) the European Parliament will vote on both ITRE and ENVI's reports regarding biofuels.

Both commitees support the idea of a binding target for advanced biofuels which are made from agriculture and forestry residues - e.g. straw. This means they support the technologies based on sustainable usage of biomass avoiding indirect CO2 emmissions - cf. the discussion regarding ILUC.

This is very positive. Advanced biofuels have a large potential creating new jobs in EU. They secure real CO2 reductions and give EU a unique opportunity to become a global frontrunner in developing sustainable biobased products.   

However, the targets for advanced biofuels are very different in the two committees. ITRE supports a target of minimum 2.5% without double counting and with gradual implementation towards 2020 and a target of 4% in 2025.
ENVI supports a target of 2% but with double counting - which means only 1% in reality - and neither growing implementation nor perspectives after 2020. This is actually weaker than the proposal from the EU Commission in October 2012. Additionally, ENVI's position with a 5.5% cap on 1G combined with double and quadruple counting means that EU will not reach the 10% RE target in the transport sector, but much less than 10% in 2020.

This concerns us. A 1% target for 2G and no implementation period with further perspectives will in our opinion give a signal too weak for potential investors - the same investors who are the key in making these good intentions on a gradual transition to advanced biofuels a reality.

Therefore, we will strongly encourage you to support the path made by ITRE with a 2.5% target for 2G without doble counting, a gradual implementation and guidelines for 2025. With a 2.5% target there will be a reasonable market pull which can give a push start to a sustainable industry and thereby create some of those jobs and the developement so desperately needed in the rural areas. At the same time we can deliver a substantial contribution in reducing the CO2 emissions from the transport sector.   

Naturally, from our point of view, Denmark has a unique oppportunity to become a frontrunner in substantial parts of advanced bioeconomy based on our strong positions within agriculture, energy, biotechnology and catalysis - not "only" within 2G biofuels, where the need is obvious, but also in relation to a range of other high value products such as new types of fodder, processes and subdeliveries - which all are part of the chain from biomass to final product.  

A concrete example is Maabjerg Energy Concept in Holstebro, which is developed as an integrated (bioethanol and biogas) and flexible plant, where straw initially will be used as feedstock. In the long run other residues from agriculture and forestry will be used. An application for NER300 funding has been made, and Danish companies are very active in the public private partnership for advanced bioeconomy Bridge 2020. But the possibilities are broader. In Denmark we also have DAKA, which use animal residues for biodiesel and several biogas plants, which potentially can upgrade the biogas for use in transport. 

Therefore, we find the decisions you have to make regarding biofuels as an important part of the European actions on promoting the development of resource efficient and sustainable solutions, which can be the answers to a range of great challenges ahead of us - among others the need to create new jobs and sustainable product processes in agriculture and industry. 

Best regards,

Claus Jensen, Chairman, Dansk Metal 
Poul Erik Skov Christensen, Chairman , 3F 
Søren Gade, CEO, Landbrug & Fødevarer
Thomas Møller Thomsen, CEO, FDM 
Lars Aagaard, CEO, Dansk Energi 
Thomas Dalsgaard, Executive Vice President, DONG Energy 
Thomas Videbæk, Executive Vice President for Business Development, Novozymes 
Gitte Seeberg, General Secretary, WWF Verdensnaturfonden 
Christian Ege Jørgensen, Head of Secretary, Det Økologisk Råd 
Peter Stigsgaard, Director, Energi- og Olieforum 
Anne Grete Holmsgaard, Director, BioRefining Alliance

This letter has been sent: Anna Rosbach, Anne E. Jensen, Bendt Bendtsen, Britta Thomsen, Christel Schaldemose, Dan Jørgensen, Emilie Turunen, Jens Rohde , Margrete Auken, Morten Løkkegaard, Morten Messerschmidt, Ole Christensen, Søren Søndergaard. 

This letter has been sent CC to:
EU Commissioner for Climate Action, Connie Hedegaard, Minister of Climate, Energy and Buildings, Martin Lidegaard, Minister of Business and Growth, Henrik Sass Larsen, Minister of Transport, Pia Olsen Dyhr.

Further comments:

Director Anne Grete Holmsgaard,


Read also joint statement from  Biochemtex, BirdLife Europe, DONG Energy, European Climate Foundation, European Environmental Bureau, Institute for European Environmental Policy, LanzaTech, Novozymes, Transport & Environment and UPM