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The European Commission on Nov. 17 launched a public consultation on the European Union’s review of its Renewable Energy Directive (RED II) focused on aligning RED II targets with the European Green Deal and a review of sustainability criteria for forestry biomass.
A report filed with the USDA Foreign Agricultural Service’s Global Agricultural Information Network explains the European Commission committed to “review and propose to revise, where necessary” relevant energy legislation by 2021 to better align with the provisions of the European Green Deal.
Under the European Green Deal, the EU aims to become carbon neutral by 2050. The GAIN report explains that the EU currently has a target in place to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emission by 20 percent by 2020 and by 40 percent by 2030, when compared to a 1990 baseline. Too achieve carbon neutrality by 2050, the Commission has proposed a 55 percent GHG reduction by 2030. To achieve that reduction, the EU will need to increase its production and use of renewable energy.
As part of the review, the Commission is also considering the sustainability criteria included in RED II for forest biomass. The report notes an ongoing study on the use of forest biomass for energy production is being carried out by the Commission’s Joint Research Center. That study, which is expected to be published before the end of the year, will also feed into the review criteria.
Feedback gathered during the public consultation is expected help the Commission determine whether a revision of the RED II is needed and what revision would be the most appropriate.
Comments can be filed through Feb. 9. A full copy of the report is available on the USDA FAS GAIN website.