nedjelja, 30. prosinca 2018.

EU's electricity market



The power system is changing. The renewable energy revolution, along with customer empowerment and growing demand flexibility, are shaking the electricity industry. Innovative technologies are becoming technically and economically viable, translating into business opportunities. 
Europe has the ambition to be the world number one in renewable energy. To fulfil this objective it must lead the development of the next generation of renewable technologies, but also integrate the energy produced from renewable sources into the energy system in an efficient and cost-effective manner. To attain these goals, ambitious R&I targets have been set for 5 renewable technologies with great potential for cost-reductions, performance improvements and large-scale deployment worldwide – off-shore wind energy, the next generation of solar photovoltaics (PVs), ocean energy, concentrated solar power (CSP) and deep geothermal energy.
New rules for making the EU's electricity market work better have been provisionally agreed by negotiators from the Council, the European Parliament and the European Commission.
This concludes the political negotiations on the Clean Energy for All Europeans package and is a major step towards completing the Energy Union and combatting climate change, delivering on the priorities of the Juncker Commission. Negotiators were able to reach political agreement on the new Electricity Regulation and Electricity Directive. This agreement follows previous agreements on the Governance proposal, the revised Energy Efficiency Directive, the revised Renewable Energy Directive, the Energy Performance in Buildings Directive and the Regulations on Risk Preparedness and the Agency for the Cooperation of Energy Regulators (ACER).
Commissioner for Climate Action and Energy Miguel Arias Cañete said: Today's deal marks the completion of negotiations on the Clean Energy for All Europeans package, putting the EU in the lead in terms of rules to accelerate and facilitate the clean energy transition. This takes us a step closer towards delivering the Energy Union, one of the priorities President Juncker set out for this Commission at the start of the mandate. Today's agreement on the future electricity market design is a vital part of the package. The new market will be more flexible and facilitate the integration of a greater share of renewable energy. An integrated EU energy market is the most cost-effective way to ensure secure and affordable supplies to all EU citizens. The new rules will create more competition and will allow consumers to participate more actively in the market and play their part in the clean energy transition. I am particularly pleased that we agreed on a balanced approach to limit capacity mechanisms and reconcile security of supply with our climate objectives. Capacity mechanisms will not be used as a backdoor subsidy of high-polluting fossil fuels as that would go against our climate objectives."
The new electricity market design proposals, a Directive and a Regulation, aim to adapt the current market rules to new market realities. They introduce a new limit for powerplants eligible to receive subsidies as capacity mechanisms. Subsidies to generation capacity emitting 550gr CO2/kWh or more will be phased out under the new rules. Furthermore, the consumer is put at the centre of the clean energy transition. The new rules enable the active participation of consumers whilst putting in place a strong framework for consumer protection. By allowing electricity to move freely to where it is most needed, society will increasingly benefit from cross-border trade and competition. They will drive the investments necessary to provide security of supply, whilst decarbonising the European energy system. The new market design also contributes to the EU's goal of being the world leader in energy production from renewable energy sources by allowing more flexibility to accommodate an increasing share of renewable energy in the grid. The shift to renewables and increased electrification is crucial to achieve carbon neutrality by 2050. The new electricity market design will also contribute to the creation of jobs and growth, and attract investments.
Next steps
Following this political agreement, the texts of the Directive and Regulation will be prepared in all EU languages and then have to be formally approved by the European Parliament and the Council. Once endorsed by both co-legislators in the coming months, the new laws will be published in the Official Journal of the Union. The Regulation will enter into force immediately and the Directive will have to be transposed into national law within 18 months.
Background
On 30 November 2016, the Commission proposed new rules (a revised Electricity market regulation and a revised Electricity market directive) on the EU energy market design in order to help energy markets include more renewables, empower consumers, and better manage energy flows across the EU.
Markets need to be improved to meet the needs of renewable energies and attract investment in the resources, like energy storage, that can compensate for variable energy production. The market must also provide the right incentives for consumers to become more active and to contribute to keeping the electricity system stable. Today's electricity market has fundamentally changed since 2009, when the most recent legislation was introduced. The share of electricity produced by renewables is expected to grow from 25% to 55% in 2030. But when the sun does not shine and the wind does not blow, electricity must still be produced in sufficient quantities to deliver energy to consumers.
The proposed measures also contain measures that ensure that state interventions designed to make sure there is sufficient energy available are only used when really needed, and in a way that does not distort the internal electricity market.
Through the revised Directive, these new rules will put consumers at the heart of the transition – giving them more choice and greater protection. Consumers will be able to become active players in the market thanks to access to smart metres, price comparison tools, dynamic price contracts and citizens' energy communities. At the same time, energy poor and vulnerable consumers will enjoy better protection.
The revised Electricity Regulation brings stricter and harmonised rules for capacity mechanisms, reconciling thus the EU objectives of security of supply and emission reduction. Enhanced regional coordination will improve market functioning and thereby competitiveness while making the system more stable.
CCRES provides a one-stop portal for accessing renewable energy information. 

ponedjeljak, 10. prosinca 2018.

Energy from Renewables



By 2030, the EU will have to get 32% of its energy from renewable sources and reach an energy efficiency headline target of 32.5%. The new targets are set out in a revised directive on energy efficiency and a revised directive on renewable energy which were adopted today by the Council. The Council also signed off on the so-called governance regulation, which sets out the framework for the governance of the Energy Union and climate action. This completes the final stage in the legislative procedure for the three files, which are part of the Clean Energy package.

Energy efficiency directive

The revised energy efficiency directive establishes a framework of measures whose main objective is to ensure that the EU's 2020 and 2030 headline targets are met. Increasing energy efficiency will benefit the environment, reduce greenhouse gas emissions, improve energy security, cut energy costs for households and companies, help alleviate energy poverty and contribute to growth and jobs.

The EU is switching to clean energy

The EU is switching to clean energy. By 2030, 32% of the energy consumed in the EU will come from renewables.

Renewable energy directive

The revision of the renewable energy directive will accelerate Europe's transition towards clean energy by building on a variety of renewable sources such as wind, solar, hydro, tidal, geothermal, biomass and biofuels. It sets a headline target of 32% energy from renewable sources at EU level for 2030.
Further key elements of the revised renewable energy directive include:
  • The roll-out of renewable electricity production will be stepped up through market-oriented support schemes, reduced permit granting procedures and one-stop-shop methods
  • The use of renewables in transport will be accelerated through increased obligations on fuel suppliers to reach a level of at least 14% of energy from renewable sources in transport, while conventional biofuels with a high risk of indirect land-use change will be phased out by 2030
  • Households that wish to produce their own renewable energy, for instance via rooftop solar panels, will be supported by being exempted to a large extent from charges or fees for their self-produced energy consumption

Governance regulation

The governance regulation defines how member states will cooperate both with each other and with the European Commission to reach the ambitious objectives of the Energy Union, including notably the renewable energy targets and the energy efficiency targets, as well as the EU's long-term greenhouse gas emissions goals. It also sets out control mechanisms that will help ensure that the targets are met, and that the range of actions proposed constitute a coherent and coordinated approach.

Businesses running on renewable energy



This clip features stockshots illustrating examples of businesses running on renewable energy, such as the Goss Brewery, in Austria.

Background

The three legislative files are part of the clean energy package, which was presented by the Commission in November 2016. The Council adopted its position (General Approach) in June 2017 for the energy efficiency directive and in December 2017 for the governance regulation and the renewable energy directive.
Following intense negotiations during the Bulgarian presidency, agreements with the European Parliament were reached on the three files in June 2018. The deals were approved by the European Parliament in plenary on 13 November.
Today's adoption by the Council was the final step. The three legislative texts are scheduled to be published in the Official Journal of the EU on 21 December. All three files will enter into force on the third day after their publication.

ponedjeljak, 19. studenoga 2018.

THERMA V R32 Monobloc


Hrvatski Centar Obnovljivih Izvora Energije 

(HCOIE) s ponosom predstavlja tvrtku LG 

Electronics i njihovu novu liniju sustava za 

grijanje THERMA V R32 Monobloc s 

inovativnim i ekološki prihvatljivim 

rashladnim sredstvom R32.





Filozofija tvrtke LG vrti se oko ljudi, odanosti i dosljednosti osnovnim načelima; razumijevanje kupaca i pružanje optimalnih rješenja i novih iskustava konstantnim inovacijama koje kupcima omogućuju bolju kvalitetu života.

Uvjerite se sami!

Tvrtka LG Electronics igra aktivnu ulogu na svjetskom tržištu sa svojom prodornom globalnom poslovnom politikom. Kao rezultat, tvrtka LG Electronics upravlja više od 100 lokalnih podružnica diljem svijeta, s otprilike 74.000 izvršnih pozicija i zaposlenika. 
Prava društvena odgovornost korporacije ogleda se u djelima. Ne radi se samo o volji, već o sposobnosti za djelovanjem. Promjene se ne događaju same od sebe pa LG ulaže velike napore u ciljano traženje novih i inovativnih načina za pružanje pomoći lokalnim zajednicama te istodobno stvara partnerstva s lokalnim organizacijama, kako bi se lakše shvatile potrebe ljudi.


 THERMA V R32 Monobloc


LG je poduzeo potrebne korake kako bi ponudio idealan klimatizacijski sustav za grijanje koji će zadovoljiti najviše standarde i povećanje potražnje ekoloških prihvatljivih rješenja koja su u skladu sa sve strožim pravilima zaštite okoliša u Europi.

 LG-eva sposobnost da uvijek brzo reagira na zahtjeve tržišta, omogućila je kompaniji postavljanje nove prekretnice u industriji rješenja za grijanje. Ovaj inovativni model dizalice topline zrak-voda može se koristiti za razne vrste grijanja – od opskrbe toplom vodom pa do podnog grijanja ili grijanja radijatora, čime predstavlja zamjenu za uobičajeni bojlerski sustav, a uz to je i namijenjen za izravno spajanje sa spremnikom vode. THERMA V R32 Monobloc osmišljen je kako bi korisnicima pružio iznimne vrijednosti, nenadmašnu energetsku učinkovitost, vrhunske pogodnosti i jednostavno upravljanje uz primjenu naprednih tehnologija.
 Novi tržišni standard za energetsku učinkovitost i performanse
LG-eva linija proizvoda THERMA V ima najučinkovitije performanse grijanja na tržištu zahvaljujući desetogodišnjem iskustvu tvrtke u sektoru rješenja za grijanje te više desetljeća bogatom iskustvu u dizajnu klimatizacijskih sustava. Novi model jasno pokazuje LG-evu stručnost i uspjeh u ovoj nišnoj industriji. THERMA V R32 Monobloc ima najbolji sustav grijanja među modelima u liniji THERMA V, a dokaz za to je i što je prema ErP regulativi svrstan u energetski razred A+++, uz sezonski koeficijent performansi (SCOP) od 4.45.
 Pouzdano grijanje pri niskoj vanjskoj temperaturi još je jedna izvanredna značajka ovog modela. THERMA V R32 može raditi čak i kada temperatura padne na -25 ° C pa tako čak i pri vrlo niskoj vanjskoj temperaturi može zagrijati vodu do 65 °C.
 Uz to, LG-ev revolucionarni spiralni Scroll kompresor također pruža iznimnu učinkovitost i pouzdanost. Pružanje radnog raspona od 10 do135 Hz je značajno poboljšanje u odnosu na raspon od 15 do100 Hz prethodnog modela pa tako THERMA V R 32 Monobloc povećava učinkovitost djelomičnog opterećenja i omogućava brzo postizanje željene temperature. Štoviše, ovaj model omogućava stabilan rad bez vibracija i buke koje je prisutno kod uobičajenog kompresora, čime se omogućava manja potrošnja energije.
 Trajnost je još jedna velika prednost proizvoda THERMA V R32 Monobloc. Njegov izmjenjivač topline s posebnim premazom Ocean Black Fin je izrazito otporan na koroziju te je osmišljen za rad u okruženju podložnom koroziji, poput onog u blizini mora. To znači duži vijek trajanja proizvoda te manje troškove održavanja.
 Unaprijeđeno korisničko sučelje podiže praktičnost na novu razinu
Radi povećanja praktičnosti za korisnike, sustav dizalice topline zrak-voda THERMA V R32 Monobloc donosi veći broj poboljšanja svog korisničkog sučelja. Najnovije LG-evo daljinsko upravljanje s novim upravljačem odlikuje elegantan i suvremen dizajn s tipkama na dodir. Osim estetske komponente, ovaj upravljač ima i različite pametne funkcije – od praćenja informacija o potrošnji energije, postavljanja rasporeda pa do rada u slučaju nezgode. Sve ove funkcionalnosti dolaze s intuitivnim korisničkim sučeljem, što omogućava brzu i jednostavnu provjeru statusa i rasporeda rada. Budući da korisnici mogu vizualno provjeriti rad sustava, mogu i jednostavno prilagoditi razinu potrošnje energije kako bi smanjio njen gubitak i troškovi.
 THERMA V R32 Monobloc dolazi s LG-evom  mobilnom aplikacijom SmartThinQ putem koje je moguće pratiti i daljinski upravljati kompatibilnim LG-evim proizvodima. Ona omogućava korisnicima da upravljaju većinom dostupnih funkcija preko daljinske upravljačke ploče. Funkcije poput napajanja, namještanja postavki rada unaprijed, nadzora potrošnje energije, podešavanja temperature i odabira načina rada mogu se jednostavno postaviti ili pratiti putem aplikacije. Jedna iznimno praktična funkcija je i upotreba aplikacije za zagrijavanje prostorije unaprijed.
 Što se tiče same instalacije, THERMA V R32 Monobloc se vrlo jednostavno postavlja. Budući da je dizajniran kao sveobuhvatan sustav koji kombinira unutarnje i vanjske jedinice, za njegov rad nisu potrebne rashladne cijevi. Također, računalni program Therma V Configurator omogućava brzo i jednostavno postavljanje i puštanje u pogon jer se postavke mogu namjestiti prije same instalacije. Detalji slijede u LG PR objavi.


A kad smo kod potrošnje, dizalica topline je cca 40% štedljivija od sustava baziranih na najnovijim kondenzacijskim bojlerima na plin a uz to i ne zagađuje okoliš. Skuplja je, ali ulog se isplati za 3 – 5 godina. Čak niti instalacija nije komplicrana, Therma V se sastoji od tri dijela – vanjske jedinice, pločastog izmjenjivača topline i ekspanzijske posude. Detalji slijede u PR objavi.
LG Electronics je predstavio novu liniju sustava za grijanje THERMA V R32 Monobloc s inovativnim i ekološki prihvatljivim rashladnim sredstvom R32. LG je poduzeo potrebne korake kako bi ponudio idealan klimatizacijski sustav za grijanje koji će zadovoljiti najviše standarde i povećanje potražnje ekoloških prihvatljivih rješenja koja su u skladu sa sve strožim pravilima zaštite okoliša u Europi.
LG-eva sposobnost da uvijek brzo reagira na zahtjeve tržišta, omogućila je kompaniji postavljanje nove prekretnice u industriji rješenja za grijanje. Ovaj inovativni model dizalice topline zrak-voda može se koristiti za razne vrste grijanja – od opskrbe toplom vodom pa do podnog grijanja ili grijanja radijatora, čime predstavlja zamjenu za uobičajeni bojlerski sustav, a uz to je i namijenjen za izravno spajanje sa spremnikom vode. THERMA V R32 Monobloc osmišljen je kako bi korisnicima pružio iznimne vrijednosti, nenadmašnu energetsku učinkovitost, vrhunske pogodnosti i jednostavno upravljanje uz primjenu naprednih tehnologija.
Novi tržišni standard za energetsku učinkovitost i performanse
LG-eva linija proizvoda THERMA V ima najučinkovitije performanse grijanja na tržištu zahvaljujući desetogodišnjem iskustvu tvrtke u sektoru rješenja za grijanje te više desetljeća bogatom iskustvu u dizajnu klimatizacijskih sustava. Novi model jasno pokazuje LG-evu stručnost i uspjeh u ovoj nišnoj industriji. THERMA V R32 Monobloc ima najbolji sustav grijanja među modelima u liniji THERMA V, a dokaz za to je i što je prema ErP regulativi svrstan u energetski razred A+++, uz sezonski koeficijent performansi (SCOP) od 4.45.
Pouzdano grijanje pri niskoj vanjskoj temperaturi još je jedna izvanredna značajka ovog modela. THERMA V R32 može raditi čak i kada temperatura padne na -25 ° C pa tako čak i pri vrlo niskoj vanjskoj temperaturi može zagrijati vodu do 65 °C.
Uz to, LG-ev revolucionarni spiralni Scroll kompresor također pruža iznimnu učinkovitost i pouzdanost. Pružanje radnog raspona od 10 do135 Hz je značajno poboljšanje u odnosu na raspon od 15 do100 Hz prethodnog modela pa tako THERMA V R 32 Monobloc povećava učinkovitost djelomičnog opterećenja i omogućava brzo postizanje željene temperature. Štoviše, ovaj model omogućava stabilan rad bez vibracija i buke koje je prisutno kod uobičajenog kompresora, čime se omogućava manja potrošnja energije.
Trajnost je još jedna velika prednost proizvoda THERMA V R32 Monobloc. Njegov izmjenjivač topline s posebnim premazom Ocean Black Fin je izrazito otporan na koroziju te je osmišljen za rad u okruženju podložnom koroziji, poput onog u blizini mora. To znači duži vijek trajanja proizvoda te manje troškove održavanja.
Unaprijeđeno korisničko sučelje podiže praktičnost na novu razinu
Radi povećanja praktičnosti za korisnike, sustav dizalice topline zrak-voda THERMA V R32 Monobloc donosi veći broj poboljšanja svog korisničkog sučelja. Najnovije LG-evo daljinsko upravljanje s novim
upravljačem odlikuje elegantan i suvremen dizajn s tipkama na dodir. Osim estetske komponente, ovaj upravljač ima i različite pametne funkcije – od praćenja informacija o potrošnji energije, postavljanja rasporeda pa do rada u slučaju nezgode. Sve ove funkcionalnosti dolaze s intuitivnim korisničkim sučeljem, što omogućava brzu i jednostavnu provjeru statusa i rasporeda rada. Budući da korisnici mogu vizualno provjeriti rad sustava, mogu i jednostavno prilagoditi razinu potrošnje energije kako bi smanjio njen gubitak i troškovi.
Monobloc_Quick_Installation_111018_D
THERMA V R32 Monobloc dolazi s LG-evom mobilnom aplikacijom SmartThinQ putem koje je moguće pratiti i daljinski upravljati kompatibilnim LG-evim proizvodima. Ona omogućava korisnicima da upravljaju većinom dostupnih funkcija preko daljinske upravljačke ploče. Funkcije poput napajanja, namještanja postavki rada unaprijed, nadzora potrošnje energije, podešavanja temperature i odabira načina rada mogu se jednostavno postaviti ili pratiti putem aplikacije. Jedna iznimno praktična funkcija je i upotreba aplikacije za zagrijavanje prostorije unaprijed.
Što se tiče same instalacije, THERMA V R32 Monobloc se vrlo jednostavno postavlja. Budući da je dizajniran kao sveobuhvatan sustav koji kombinira unutarnje i vanjske jedinice, za njegov rad nisu potrebne rashladne cijevi. Također, računalni program Therma V Configurator omogućava brzo i jednostavno postavljanje i puštanje u pogon jer se postavke mogu namjestiti prije same instalacije. 
Više o ovom proizvodu kao i o samoj tvrtki možete naći na: https://www.lg.com/hr/monobloc
Sva pitanja i kontakt prema tvrtki možete ostvariti na: https://www.lg.com/global/business/air-solution/contact-us

nedjelja, 4. studenoga 2018.

2nd Clean Energy for EU Islands Forum





Islands and island regions face a particular set of energy challenges linked to their special geographic and climatic conditions. Many of our European islands have expensive oil-based energy structures, which mean that they are still dependent on costly fossil fuel imports. Islands need therefore to generate their own clean, competitive energy from renewable sources, further deploy energy efficiency solutions and innovative technologies. To discuss these issues at the highest institutional level and with the wide range of stakeholders, the second Clean Energy for EU Islands Forum take place in the island of Lanzarote, in the Canary Islands of Spain, November 2018. 



There are more than 2200 inhabited islands in the EU. Despite having access to renewable sources of energy, such as wind and wave energy, many of them depend on expensive fossil fuel imports for their energy supply. As part of the 'Clean Energy for All Europeans' package, the EU's Clean Energy for EU Islands initiative provides a long term framework to help islands generate their own sustainable, low-cost energy. This will result in:
  • Reduced energy costs and greatly increased production of renewable energy and the construction of energy storage facilities and demand response systems, using the latest technologies
  • better energy security for islands, which will be less reliant on imports
  • improved air quality, lower greenhouse gas emissions, and less impact on islands' natural environments
  • the creation of new jobs and business opportunities, boosting islands' economic self-sufficiency.
The Clean Energy for EU Islands initiative was launched in May 2017 in Malta, when the European Commission and 14 EU countries (Croatia, Cyprus, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Malta, Portugal, Spain, and Sweden) signed a Political Declaration. #CleanEnergyIslands 



This year’s Forum agenda will focus on finding ways to accelerate the clean energy transition on islands by making them frontrunners in the transformation of their energy systems, ensure secure and competitive energy, and bring benefits to local economies. The Forum is organised by the European Commission with the support of the newly established Secretariat for the Clean Energy for EU Islands Initiative and co-hosted by the Government of the Canary Islands. The first Forum, officially launching the Initiative, took place in Chania, Greece, in September 2017.



Participants include high-level speakers from EU institutions, national ministers from several Member States, local authorities, citizens' organizations, business and academia, and together they will share best practices and try to enhance collaboration to advance the clean energy transition on EU islands and discuss progress on the Clean Energy for EU Islands Initiative. The Initiative promotes the energy self-reliance of islands, encourages the reduction of imported fossil fuel dependency, and facilitates the deployment of the best available clean technologies in islands. It is part of the European Commission’s ‘Clean Energy for All Europeans' package, and was endorsed by a Political Declaration on Clean Energy for EU Islands,  signed in Valletta, Malta, in May 2017. The Commission is committed to ensuring that the energy concerns of island inhabitants are at the forefront of the energy transition and are key to policy developments.



The second Clean Energy for EU Islands forum is organised by the Secretariat for the Clean Energy for EU Islands Initiative on behalf of the European Commission and co-hosted by the Government of the Canary Islands. The forum aims at taking stock of the Initiative's first year, and at presenting the offer of support for islands within the Secretariat's framework.
It will feature high level speakers from the EU institutions, practitioners and activists involved in clean energy transition. The forum's target audience are local authorities, citizens' organizations, business and academia.
The forum agenda will focus on the following thematic blocks:
  • Multilevel governance for clean energy transition
  • Building stakeholders' engagement and bottom-up approach to decarbonisation
  • Outermost Regions' experience in pursuing zero-emission transformation
  • Best practice in planning island-wide decarbonisation
The event will be web streamed (link will be activated on 5/11/2018)
For social media: #CE4EUIslands


Background

Islands and island regions face a particular set of energy challenges related to their specific geographic and climatic conditions. The role of islands as platforms for pilot initiatives on clean energy transition in the EU and their potential to serve as showcases at international level was explicitly recognised in the Commission Communication on "Clean Energy for all Europeans".
The Commission, together with 14 Member States, signed under the Maltese Presidency in May, 2017 the "Political Declaration on Clean Energy For EU Islands" and shortly after launched the Clean Energy for EU Islands Initiative, at the inaugural forum in Chania, Crete. The Initiative promotes the energy self-reliance of islands, encourages the reduction of the dependency on costly imported fossil fuel, and aims to facilitate the delivery of best available clean technologies to islands. The Commission is committed to ensuring that the energy concerns of island inhabitants are at the forefront of the energy transition and are central to policy developments.
In support of the Initiative, the Commission in cooperation with the European Parliament set up the Secretariat for the Clean Energy for EU Islands Initiative which has been operational since June 2018. It acts as a platform of exchange of practice for islands' stakeholders and provides dedicated capacity building and advisory services.

Croatian Center of Renewable Energy Sources ( CCRES)

četvrtak, 11. listopada 2018.

Renewable Energy Directive (RED)







The EU Renewable Energy Directive classifies wood as a low-carbon fuel source, and would encourage deforestation around the world, critics say. In a new paper published by Nature Communications, eight international scientists condemned the plan for ignoring the advice of hundreds of experts, and likely increasing atmospheric carbon “for decades to centuries” to come.

This Renewable Energy Directive (RED) is now finalized. Because meeting a small quantity of Europe’s energy use requires a large quantity of wood, and because of the example it sets for the world, the RED profoundly threatens the world’s forests.

Makers of wood products have for decades generated electricity and heat from wood process wastes, which still supply the bulk of Europe’s forest-based bioenergy. Although burning these wastes emits carbon dioxide, it benefits the climate because the wastes would quickly decompose and release their carbon anyway. Yet nearly all such wastes have long been used.
Over the last decade, however, due to similar flaws in the 2008 RED, Europe has expanded its use of wood harvested to burn directly for energy, much from U.S. and Canadian forests in the form of wood pellets. Contrary to repeated claims, almost 90% of these wood pellets come from the main stems of trees, mostly of pulpwood quality, or from sawdust otherwise used for wood products.
Unlike wood wastes, harvesting additional wood just for burning is likely to increase carbon in the atmosphere for decades to centuriesThis effect results from the fact that wood is a carbon-based fuel whose harvest and use are inefficient from a greenhouse gas (GHG) perspective. Typically, around one third or more of each harvested tree is contained in roots and small branches that are properly left in the forest to protect soils but that decompose and release carbon. Wood that reaches a power plant can displace fossil emissions but per kWh of electricity typically emits 1.5x the CO2 of coal and 3x the CO2 of natural gas because of wood’s carbon bonds, water content and lower burning temperature.
Allowing trees to regrow can reabsorb the carbon, but for some years a regrowing forest typically absorbs less carbon than if the forest were left unharvested, increasing the carbon debt. Eventually, the regrowing forest grows faster and the additional carbon it then absorbs plus the reduction in fossil fuels can together pay back the carbon debt on the first stand harvested. But even then, carbon debt remains on the additional stands harvested in succeeding years, and it takes more years for more stands to regrow before there is just carbon parity between use of wood and fossil fuels. It then takes many more years of forest regrowth to achieve substantial GHG reductions.
The renewability of trees, unlike fossil fuels, helps explain why biomass can eventually reduce GHGs but only over long periods. The amount of increase in GHGs by 2050 depends on which and how forests are ultimately harvested, how the energy is used and whether wood replaces coal, oil or natural gas. Yet overall, replacing fossil fuels with wood will likely result in 2-3x more carbon in the atmosphere in 2050 per gigajoule of final energy. Because the likely renewable alternative would be truly low carbon solar or wind, the plausible, net effect of the biomass provisions could be to turn a ~5% decrease in energy emissions by 2050 into increases of ~5–10% or even more.
The implications for forests and carbon are large because even though Europe harvests almost as much wood as the US and Canada combined, these harvests could only supply ~5.5% of its primary energy and ~4% of its final energy. If wood were to supply 40% of the additional renewable energy—an uncertain but plausible level—the wood volumes required would equal all of Europe’s wood harvest. In fact, the RED sets a goal to increase by 10% renewable energy for heat, sourced overwhelmingly from wood, which would likely by itself use ~50% of Europe’s present annual wood harvestEuropean Commission planning documents projected somewhat smaller roles for bioenergy based on lower renewable energy targets, but they scale up to ~55–85% of Europe’s wood harvest at the larger target ultimately adopted. Supplying this level of wood will probably require expanding harvests in forests all over the world.
The global signal may have even greater effects on climate and biodiversity. At the last global climate conference (UNFCCC-COP 23, Bonn 2017), tropical forest countries and others, including Indonesia and Brazil, jointly declared goals “to increase the use of wood … to generate energy as part of efforts to limit climate change. Once countries and powerful private companies become invested in such efforts, further expansion will become harder to stop. The effect can already be seen in the United States, where Congress in both 2017 and 2018 added provisions to annual spending bills declaring nearly all forest biomass carbon free—although environmentalists have so far fought to limit the legal effects to a single year.If the world met just an additional 2% of global primary energy with wood, it would need to double its industrial wood harvests.
Unfortunately, various sustainability conditions in the RED would have little consequence. For example, one repeated instruction is that harvesting trees should occur sustainably, but sustainable does not equal low carbon. Perhaps the strictest version of sustainability, often defended as a landscape approach, claims GHG reductions so long as harvest of trees in a country (or just one forest) does not exceed the forest’s incremental growthYet, by definition, this incremental growth would otherwise add biomass, and therefore carbon storage to the forest, holding down climate changeThis carbon sink, in large part due to climate change itself, is already factored into climate projections and is not disposable. Harvesting and burning this biomass reduces the sink and adds carbon to the air just like burning any other carbon fuel. The directive only requires forests to maintain existing carbon stocks in limited circumstances, but given the size of the global forest sink, even applying such a rule everywhere would still allow global industrial wood harvests to more than triple.
The directive also repeatedly cites a goal to preserve biodiversity, but its provisions will afford little protection. Prohibitions on harvesting wood directly for bioenergy apply only to primary forests—a small share of global forests. In addition, any forests could be cut to replace the vast quantities of wood diverted from existing managed forests to bioenergy.
Some argue that increasing carbon in the atmosphere for decades is fine so long as reductions eventually occur, but timely mitigation matters. More carbon in the atmosphere for decades means more damages for decades, and more permanent damages due to more rapid melting of permafrost, glaciers and ice-sheets, and more packing of heat and acidity into the world’s oceans. Recognizing this need, the EU otherwise requires that GHG reductions occur over 20-years, but that timing does not apply to forest biomass.
Instead, the directive incorporates the view that forest biomass is inherently carbon neutral if harvested sustainably. Although the RED requires that bioenergy generate large greenhouse gas reductions, its accounting rules ignore the carbon emitted by burning biomass itself. They only count GHGs from trace gases and use of fossil fuels to produce the bioenergy, which is like counting the GHGs from coal-mining machinery but not from burning the coal.


The main new Commission thinking, reflected in the sustainability provisions, is that bioenergy rules do not need to count plant carbon so long as countries that supply the wood have commitments related to land use emissions under European rules or the Paris accord. But this thinking repeats the confusion that occurred at the time of the Kyoto Protocol between rules designed only to count global emissions and laws designed to shape national or private incentives. Under accounting rules for the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), countries that burn biomass can ignore the resulting energy emissions because the countries that cut down the trees used for the biomass must count the carbon lost from the forest. Switching from coal to biomass allows a country to ignore real energy emissions that physically occur there, but the country supplying the wood must report higher land use emissions (at least compared to the no-bioenergy alternative). The combination does not make bioenergy carbon free because it balances out global accounting, the limited goal of national reporting.
But this accounting system does not work for national energy laws. If a country’s laws give its power plants strong financial incentives to switch from coal to wood on the theory that wood is carbon-neutral, those power plants have incentives to burn wood regardless of the real carbon consequences. Even if a country supplying the wood reports higher land use emissions through the UNFCCC, that carbon is not the power plant’s problem. Only if all potential wood-supplying countries imposed a carbon fee on the harvest of wood, and this fee equaled Europe’s financial incentive to burn it, would European power plants have a financial reason to properly factor the carbon into their decisions. No country has done that or seems likely to do so.
In fact, few countries have any obligation to compensate for reduced carbon in their forests because few countries have adopted quantitative goals in the land use sector as part of the Paris accord. Even if countries did try to make up for reduced forest carbon due to bioenergy with additional mitigation of some kind, all Europe would achieve is a requirement that its consumers pay more to do something harmful for the climate so that other countries could then spend additional money to compensate.
Europe has also created a kind of reverse REDD + strategy by treating forest and all other biomass as carbon neutral in its Emissions Trading System, which limits emissions from power plants and factories. While the not yet realized hope behind REDD + is to reward countries for preserving carbon in forests, this bioenergy policy means forest owners can be rewarded for the carbon in their trees—so long as they cut them down and sell them for energy. The higher the price of carbon rises, the more valuable cutting down trees will become. Strangely, this policy also undermines years of efforts to save trees by recycling used paper instead of burning it for energy. Even as recycling polices push consumers to save trees, this policy will encourage others to burn them.
Alternatives include various forms of solar power, which typically generate at least 100 times more useable energy per hectare than bioenergy even on good land—and even more on dry lands and rooftops. Possible future limits on solar if storage does not evolve cannot justify bioenergy today. With solar costs already dropping below $US 0.02/kWh in some world locations, and offshore wind in Europe below $US0.06, solar and wind have many economic advantages over bioenergy, particularly for electricity, even with bioenergy’s incorrect GHG accounting. Unfortunately, these advantages are unlikely to fully negate the political and occasional economic benefits enabled by flawed climate accounting of simply replacing fossil fuels with wood.
Although some scientists support this use of forests, and the IPCC has found it difficult to speak clearly about biomass in the face of different views, the fact that ~800 scientists came forward provides hope of a clearer and stronger message from the scientific community. The fate of the biosphere appears at stake. Individual European countries still have discretion to pursue alternatives to forest biomass. Whatever their fields, all scientists who care should educate themselves, overcome a natural reluctance to venture into a separate and controversial field, speak with great clarity and hold public institutions to account.


Affiliations

  1. Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, Princeton University, Princeton, 08544, New Jersey, USA

    • Timothy D. Searchinger
  2. Integrative Research Institute on Transformations of Human Environment Systems (IRI THESys), Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, Berlin, 10099, Germany

    • Tim Beringer
  3. Statistics Norway, Oslo, N-0131, Norway

    • Bjart Holtsmark
  4. Energy and Resources Group, Renewable and Appropriate Energy Laboratory, and Goldman School of Public Policy, UC Berkeley, Berkeley, 94720, California, USA

    • Daniel M. Kammen
  5. School of Earth, Energy & Environmental Sciences and Woods Institute for the Environment, Stanford University, Stanford, 94305, California, USA

    • Eric F. Lambin
  6. Earth and Life Institute, Université catholique de Louvain, B-1348, Louvain-la-Neuve, Belgium

    • Eric F. Lambin
    •  & Jean-Pascal van Ypersele
  7. Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research, Potsdam, 14473, Germany

    • Wolfgang Lucht
  8. Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, 10099, 8 Berlin, Germany

    • Wolfgang Lucht
  9. Missouri Botanical Garden, St. Louis, 63110, Missouri, USA

    • Peter Raven

Contributions


T.D.S. led the writing. T.D.S., T.B., and B.H. performed calculations. T.B., B.H., D.M.K., E.F.L., W.L., P.R., and J.-P.v.Y. contributed to writing and analysis.

While the directive is essentially a done deal, it still allows countries to decide how to implement it. The system does not work for national energy laws, which will be required by the directive. If power plants have strong incentives to switch from coal to carbon-neutral wood, they will burn wood regardless of any real environmental consequences. Even if countries supplying the wood report emissions through UNFCCC, those emissions are not the power plants' problem. A nation could opt for wind or solar energy over wood bioenergy, though it would need strong incentives. For example, a country could impose a fee on harvesting wood, which would ultimately raise its cost and make wood too expensive for Europe to import for fuel.

Croatian Center of Renewable Energy Sources ( CCRES)