Wind and solar photovoltaic are way too small to cope with Europe's massive demand for heating, especially in winter, says Christian Holter who calls for allocating scarce renewable energy resources to economic sectors where they can bring the most in terms of carbon reduction.
There is no debate that burning wood for energy emits more greenhouse gases per unit of energy than burning fossil fuels. Yet the EU's renewable energy directive continues to uphold that burning forest wood is "carbon neutral," write Jean-Pascal van Ypersele and Mary S. Booth.
The production of so-called green hydrogen from wind and solar electricity is seen as a potential game-changer for the transition to a 100% renewable energy system. But getting there will take some time and some intermediary solutions will be needed, says Daan Peters.
A group of plaintiffs from Estonia, France, Ireland, Romania, Slovakia, Sweden, and the US are filing a lawsuit against the European Union on Monday (4 March) to challenge the inclusion of forest biomass in the bloc’s renewable energy directive.
The failure to reverse growth in greenhouse gas emissions means the world is now increasingly dependent on unproven technologies to remove CO2 from the atmosphere in order to avert dangerous climate change, scientists warned on Tuesday (19 February).
Ethanol will have a very important role in decarbonising the transport sector globally, the executive director of the International Energy Agency (IEA) told EURACTIV.com. Another energy expert said electrification will play a major role in transport but is not applicable to all sectors, which is where biofuels come in.
Global carbon emissions will rise to a new record level in 2018, making the chances of reaching a target to keep temperature increases to 1.5 or 2°C "weaker and weaker every year, every month," the head of the International Energy Agency (IEA) has said.
The latest report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) indicates that biofuels will need to rise 260% by 2030 and 750% by 2050 in order to contain global warming below 1.5°C. Yet, the EU Bioeconomy Strategy, published days after, seems to ignore this, writes James Cogan.
The European Commission unveiled a new bioeconomy strategy on Thursday (11 October), saying it could reduce the EU's dependence on fossil fuels while underlining the ecological limitations of Europe’s farming and forestry sector.
As the European Commission considers its long-term strategy to cut EU greenhouse gas emissions, Julia Christian says they must reject an unproven and dangerous technology in favour of protecting and restoring natural forests.
The European Union’s proposed new biomass policy has enough built-in safeguards to ensure it doesn’t lead to additional carbon emissions, an EU official told a EURACTIV event last week, amid warnings that the policy risks making global warming worse by increasing deforestation.
Forests are Europe’s biggest carbon sinks and forestry the sector with the greatest potential to remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere in the quantities needed to meet the bloc’s objectives under the Paris Agreement.
Bioenergy has to be an essential part of the EU energy mix for at least the next 30 years. Without it, the commitment to a 1.5°C global warming target will be very hard, if not impossible to achieve, argue a group of scientists.
Net forest growth is now holding down the rate of climate change, making forests an invaluable “carbon sink”. Reducing this sink by cutting down more trees adds carbon to the air and makes climate change worse just like burning any other carbon-based fuel, write Tim Searchinger and Wolfgang Lucht.
The debate about the impact of burning solid biomass on air quality was steadfastly ignored by European Commission in revising the EU’s renewable energy policy. It is not too late for the European Parliament to rectify this, writes Linde Zuidema.
Claims that a "critical flaw" has been discovered in carbon accounting are somewhat exaggerated, and substantial bioenergy resources - subject to well-understood checks and balances- are available to tackle climate change, argue a group of scientists.
Campaigners have warned about the environmental dangers of bioenergy, saying burning wood is not low-carbon. However, forests can – and must – be managed in a sustainable way that maintains or even increases the carbon stock, writes Tony Juniper.
Opposition to the use of forest biomass for energy generation is going mainstream, writes Linde Zuidema, as evidence builds that wood is being burnt in large scale inefficient coal-fired power stations.
Ahead of a European Parliament vote on land use, land use change and forestry (LULUCF), Hannah Aho explains how MEPs have both strengthened and weakened draft forest rules she says are essential in the fight against climate change.