• REA responds to the Biomass Strategy Call for Evidence saying the Government must re-assert its commitment to delivering a strong biomass sector, by continuing to build on existing bioenergy heat, transport, and power sectors.
  • The response welcomed Government’s recognition that biomass had a crucial role to play, but policy gaps need to be addressed
  • Significant potential for growth for domestic biomass feedstocks also highlighted, as well as the opportunities for future innovation

 

The Association for Renewable Energy and Clean Technology (REA) have responded to the Biomass Strategy Call for Evidence saying that the Government must re-assert its commitment to delivering a strong biomass sector.

The response welcomed the Government’s recognition that biomass has a critical role to play in getting to net zero, but said that it was essential that policy gaps facing the sector are addressed.

Development of the response followed a series of REA roundtables with industry stakeholders, with over 100 bioenergy practitioners providing input. This was accompanied by close engagement with the government’s biomass strategy team and several bilateral discussions with MPs.

 

Mark Sommerfeld, Head of Power and Flexibility at the Association for Renewable Energy and Clean Technology (REA), said:

“We welcome the Government’s commitment to recognising the critical role biomass has to play in getting to net zero and the need to for an up-to-date strategy to see this delivered.

“Biomass already plays a fundamental role in decarbonising the UK, providing the largest contribution to renewable energy across power, heat and transport overall.

“Therefore, future biomass policy must build on the success of existing industries, providing immediate carbon savings while the UK moves forward with the energy transition. It is essential that policy gaps facing the sector today are addressed to further strengthen existing biomass supply chains, expertise and the near 50,000 jobs already associated with the sector.

“Now is the time for Government to re-assert its commitment to delivery of a strong biomass sector, already operating within a stringent sustainability governance regime, ensuring bioenergy remains an example of strong UK leadership around the world. We look forward to working with the government to continue to support this internationally significant sector through further development of the Biomass Strategy, so that it is able to fulfil its role in helping the UK meet its net zero ambitions.”

 

The REA’s response also underlines the significant potential for the growth of domestic biomass feedstocks, providing essential demand for wood products that drives tree planting and brings more woodlands in to sustainable managements. It says that this market dynamic must be recognised by government if it is to realise its future tree planting and bioenergy targets.

The REA also said that the delivery of successful bioenergy sectors will deliver further innovation – this includes bioenergy carbon capture and storage which will deliver negative emissions which the Committee on Climate Change has labelled of critical importance if the UK’s emissions targets are to be met.

 

 

—ENDS—

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Notes to editors:

The REA’s full response can be found here: https://staging.r-e-a.net/resources/biomass-strategy-call-for-evidence-rea-response/

Policy gaps include:

  • A replacement to the Non-Domestic Renewable Heat Incentive, which closed in March, with support for fuel switching to help decarbonise heat in commercial and industrial applications.
  • Increase the stated ambitions within the Renewable Transport Fuel Obligation to 2032, in order to drive the development of fuels needed to decarbonise heavy goods vehicles, airplanes and shipping.
  • Provide post-2027 sector confidence for continued use of existing bioelectricity plants, enabling them to invest in critical carbon capture and storage technology once the Renewable Obligation ends.

About the Association for Renewable Energy and Clean Technology (REA):
The Association for Renewable Energy and Clean Technology (known as the REA) is the UK’s largest trade association for renewable energy and clean technologies with around 550 members operating across heat, transport, power and the Circular Economy. The REA is a not-for-profit organisation representing fourteen sectors, ranging from biogas and renewable fuels to solar and electric vehicle charging. Membership ranges from major multinationals to sole traders.

For more information, visit: www.r-e-a.net