The European Bioeconomy Alliance, representing 12 leading European organisations in various sectors active in the bioeconomy including ePURE, responded to the European Commission’s public consultation on the roadmap of the forthcoming EU Climate Law. The transition to a circular bioeconomy is a major opportunity to create competitive advantages for Europe and, as the updated EU Bioeconomy Strategy underlines “[a] sustainable European bioeconomy is necessary to build a carbon neutral future in line with the Climate objectives of the Paris Agreement”.
ePURE is committed to a carbon neutral Europe by mid-century. The European ethanol industry has a proven track record in delivering innovative and decarbonising solutions and will further contribute through technology improvements. We welcome that the Commission acknowledges that transport needs to be decarbonised and the important role of advanced biofuels to achieving Europe’s long-term climate goals. In fact, all sustainable low carbon fuels including both crop-based and advanced ethanol have a critical role to play to reach carbon neutrality. As the IEA and IRENA recently highlighted, sustainable biofuels are essential to meet the Paris Agreement. It is therefore crucial that the EU long-term strategy addresses how to effectively increase their share in the transport energy mix.
ePURE, representing the European producers of renewable ethanol, believes that the agreed concession granted to Mercosur in the form of a Tariff Rate Quota (TRQ) for ethanol remains disproportional as: the EU ethanol market has not grown significantly to allow the absorption of such volumes which correspond to close to 12% of the entire market it risks seriously disrupting the EU ethanol market for all end-uses unlike the EU, Brazil has a remarkable ability to protect and support its industry and farmers the agreement ignores that renewable ethanol is positive for Europe if produced domestically
ePURE joins global ethanol industry groups in calling for urgent roll out of E10 and higher blend ethanol fuel to help address crisis in transport sector carbon emissions.
Sustainable low-carbon liquid fuels like renewable ethanol are essential to achieving the emissions reduction goals of the EU’s Clean Mobility Package. They represent an immediate, cost-effective solution to decarbonising transport with existing infrastructure and internal combustion engines that will still be prevalent on the road in the coming decades, even when considering the most ambitious scenarios for the
uptake of electric vehicles.
Trilogue negotiators have a unique opportunity to adopt a realistic approach to clean mobility by:
Moving progressively towards a full life-cycle analysis approach to counting emissions Incentivising sustainable low-carbon renewable fuels
Ahead of the next negotiating round on the post-2020 Renewable Energy Directive, the EU Biofuel Chain reiterates the importance of finding an agreement among the institutions based on the structure proposed by the Council’s Presidency in its latest proposal, which foresees the inclusion of conventional biofuels in transport’s incorporation obligations on fossil fuel suppliers under Article 25. While supportive of the advanced generation of biofuels, the EU Biofuel Chain warns against the risk associated with any reduction of the share of conventional biofuels to make room for future technologies. Advanced biofuels are not meant to replace the conventional generation of biofuels but should contribute to the decarbonisation of the transport sector in addition to the existing ones.
Ahead of the RED II trilogue negotiations on 17 May, ePURE joins a group of five associations in calling for a stable, long-term biofuels policy. Guaranteeing existing and future investments in the biofuel sector and ensuring greater consistency between the different EU policy areas will ensure that the strategy’s ambitious climate and energy objectives can be put into actual practice in the period after 2020. To this end, and to ensure an ambitious share of renewables in transport, we endorse an ambitious 35% target for renewables coupled with a minimum transport incorporation obligation of 14% for all renewable sources, without technological restrictions. This level should build on the existing 10% target for 2020 and follow an increasing linear trajectory until 2030, without being artificially boosted by multipliers for renewable electricity.
As the process of deciding on post-2020 light vehicles CO2 standards begins, ePURE calls on the co-legislators to consider the following key policy recommendations as part of the Clean Mobility Package: adopting a technology neutral approach to realistically decarbonise EU transport sector ensuring policy continuity and consistency promoting conventional fuels improvements and the deployment of low-carbon liquid fuels
Ahead of trilogue negotiations on the Renewable Energy Directive for 2020-2030, ePURE – representing European producers of renewable ethanol from conventional and advanced feedstock – calls on negotiators to create an ambitious framework for increasing the share of renewable energy in transport, consisting of:
- a firm minimum 12% RES-T target, without multipliers, to which crop-based biofuels can contribute
- a stable 7% crop cap – any reduction should not penalize biofuels with high GHG savings
- a binding sub-target for Annex IX-A advanced biofuels – as per the Commission proposal
Ahead of the 18 December meeting of the EU’s Transport, Telecommunications and Energy Council to discuss the Presidency compromise proposal on the EU Renewable Energy Directive post-2020 (RED II), the EU’s Biofuels Chain has written ministers and called for the Council to increase the proposal’s ambition for renewables in transport to at least 15%. “This is in line with the Commission’s own RED II impact assessment,” the letter states, “and this requirement should include crop-based biofuels, the main contributor to today’s decarbonisation in the transport sector.”
EU Biofuels Chain views on the Presidency compromise proposal on RED II.
Biofuels Value Chain: Joint letter to TRAN and ENVI political coordinators regarding TRAN opinion on RED II
Letter from associations representing the Biofuels Value Chain in Europe call on the European Parliament’s TRAN and ENVI committees to give enough time for proper consideration of their RED II opinions.
With its revised Renewable Energy Directive (RED II) the European Commission wants to phase out conventional biofuel use in Europe – a proposal that threatens to remove ethanol — one of the EU’s best options for reducing greenhouse gases and decarbonising transport. The measure would reduce the maximum contribution of conventional biofuels, such as ethanol made from corn, wheat and sugar beet grown in Europe, from a maximum of 7% of road transport energy in 2021 to 3.8% in 2030.
With its revised Renewable Energy Directive (RED II) the European Commission wants to phase out all conventional biofuels in the EU. But in making its proposal the Commission has ignored many of its own guidelines for Impact Assessments, including on evidence-based policy making and the proportionality of its policy choices. The Commission provides no scientific evidence or rational arguments to justify the proposed end of policy support for sustainable conventional ethanol post-2020 – a move that would severely restrict biofuels’ contribution towards renewable energy targets.
EU Biofuels Value Chain: Key principles for the discussion on the post-2020 EU Renewable Energy Directive (RED II).
Decarbonising the EU transport sector requires concrete and realistic policies. The European Commission’s proposal for a revised Renewable Energy Directive does not deliver in this regard. Post-2020, an effective policy requires increased energy efficiency and the gradual reduction in carbon intensity of all fuels put on the market. But the latter, one of the most cost-effective solutions for carbon abatement, was not retained in the Commission’s proposal, for the sole and incorrect reason that only one Member State has implemented it. Increasing the level of ambition for renewables in transport and continuing the approach of the Fuel Quality Directive (Art. 7a) beyond 2020 is crucial and in line with the European Council conclusions of October 2014.
With its new revised Renewable Energy Directive (RED II) the European Commission wants to phase out conventional biofuel use in Europe – a proposal that threatens to remove one of the EU’s best options for reducing greenhouse gases and decarbonising transport. The measure would reduce the maximum contribution of conventional biofuels, such as ethanol made from corn, wheat and sugar beet grown in Europe, from a maximum of 7% of road transport energy in 2021 to 3.8% in 2030.
After 2020, the 2030 policy framework for transport decarbonisation needs to incentivise the continuous decrease of transport fuels’ carbon intensity.
After 2020, a binding policy framework to decarbonise transport is crucial to meeting EU 2030 climate ambitions.
For the post-2020 period, the EU must propose clear, consistent and binding measures that increase the climate performance of transport fuels, while decreasing the over-reliance on diesel and include incentives for the deployment of sustainable low carbon fuel technologies, including both conventional and cellulosic ethanol. The recommendations outlined in this Roadmap should be considered in the context of a number of industry wide issues that need to be addressed in policy formation.
ePURE’s views on the promotion of emissions reduction and renewable energy sources in transport post-2020
ePURE’s input into the Commission Consultation for the “Preparation of a new renewable energy directive for the period after 2020” and our views on the promotion of emissions reduction and renewable energy sources in transport post-2020