The European Commission’s long-term strategy for decarbonisation highlights the essential and increasing role the EU bioeconomy must play in reducing greenhouse gas emissions. In doing so it sends a clear signal that Europe needs more than ever to boost its bioeconomy sectors if it wants the strategy to become a reality.
The European Bioeconomy Alliance (EUBA), representing sectors active in the bioeconomy – agriculture, forestry, biotechnology, sugar, starch, vegetable oils, pulp and paper, bioplastics, renewable ethanol, and research & innovation – is committed to working with policymakers to make that happen.
The switch towards a circular bio-based economy, as pointed out in the Communication strategic building blocks, has the potential to play a leading role in pursuing the mid-century ambitions of the European Union.
The bioeconomy encompasses the sustainable production of renewable biological resources from land and sea and their conversion into and their conversion into vital products and bio-energy through efficient and/or innovative technologies. It delivers a more competitive, dynamic and sustainable European economy by valorising non-fossil carbon to substitute fossil-based raw materials and more carbon-intensive products and production processes.
To reap the full potential of the circular bioeconomy, the European Union should step-up efforts to:
- Develop a coherent, holistic, supportive policy framework for the circular economy and for bioeconomy along the whole value-chain
- Implement the bioeconomy strategy updated in October 2018 and its action plan entitled “Bioeconomy: the European way to use our natural resources”
- Develop agricultural and rural development policies that support further the production and provision of sustainable biomass to feed into the circular bioeconomy
- Develop a robust, well-funded 9th framework programme for research and Innovation “Horizon Europe” with a clear focus on “bioeconomy” and boosts technological innovation across sectors.
- Involve private partners and set-up effective Public-Private Partnerships that leverage innovation and investments on bio-based solutions.
- Consolidate the relevance of the circular bio-based economy with robust data and facts on its expected environmental, climate, social and economic benefits.
- Raise awareness and promote a market preference for circular bio-based products through e.g. Public Procurement, standards and labels.