10 Februar 2015

New Bioeconomy Alliance calls for EU action on bioeconomy strategy

Developing the bioeconomy only feasible if the EU provides “a holistic, coherent and harmonised framework in a range of policy fields"

The newly-formed European Bioeconomy Alliance (EBA) has called for more predictable policies which will create “a long-term strategy for a competitive, dynamic and sustainable bioeconomy in Europe.”

Launched at the European Parliament on 4 February, the EBA said that developing the bioeconomy is only feasible if the EU provides “a holistic, coherent and harmonised framework in a range of policy fields: agriculture, forestry, marine, industrial, climate, environment, energy, research, innovation and regional development.”

Dr Adrian Higson, NNFCC’s lead consultant on biobased products said “This new alliance demonstrates the breadth of industries involved in the bioeconomy. It provides an opportunity for these industries to speak with a common voice on the support required and the importance of a holistic policy approach to catalyse Europe’s growing bioeconomy.”

EBA (an informal alliance of leading European bioeconomy organisations), highlighted four areas where it says that the EU must act to enable Europe to become a world leader in the bioeconomy:

  1. Implement priority recommendations from the Lead Market Initiative on biobased products. This will not only create new markets and jobs, but also stimulate economic recovery, focusing on: access to feedstock, research, development and innovation, access to markets, public procurement and communication.
  2. Encourage member states to implement measures to i) increase agricultural and forestry productivity and soil fertility in a sustainable way and ii) facilitate mobilisation and access to renewable feedstock at competitive prices.
  3. Address barriers to investment in first commercial operations, such as biorefineries in Europe. The Public Private Partnership on biobased industries is a first step in the right direction and should facilitate and catalyse other European and national and regional financing sources.
  4. Engage with civil society, together with farmers, forest owners and industry, to encourage the debate on shaping a more competitive, sustainable bioeconomy for Europe.

EBA’s vision is to help establish a more competitive, innovative, energy-secure and sustainable Europe, separating economic growth from a reliance on imported fossil sources, resource depletion, and environmental impact. It fully supports both the European Commission’s work on developing an EU bioeconomy as well as on-going efforts at member state and regional level to implement local strategies. In addition, EBA entirely supports the recent establishment of the European Parliament intergroup on “climate change, biodiversity and sustainable development” and its subgroup on the bioeconomy.

According to the European Commission, the European bioeconomy is worth nearly €2 trillion and provides more than 22 million jobs in Europe. EBA is urging the Commision to prioritise development of the bioeconomy in its new €315 billion investment plan, as well as in national and regional measures, to help ensure Europe’s sustainable economic recovery.

For further information about the EBA contact info@bioeconomyalliance.eu

Source: NNFCC, press release, 2015-02-05.

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