EU legislation directly influences the competitiveness of bioenergy compared to other fossil alternatives. In 2012, Bioenergy Europe's Working Group on Economic Competitiveness followed closely the revision of the Energy Taxation Directive (2003/96/EC) which aimed at introducing an EU-wide CO2 tax. The WG published a position paper reflecting the sector's views (available: Bioenergy Europe position paper on energy taxation). Unfortunately, negotiations failed and it is now up to Member States to decide if they want to introduce a national CO2 tax.
In 2016 with the wave of low fossil fuel prices, Bioenergy Europe reactivated this Working Group to foster exchange on how to establish national carbon taxes and support its members in the promotion of such an important competitiveness tool for bioenergy.
In fact, even if costs are gradually brought down, it is critically difficult for bioenergy to become competitive in markets where fossil fuels are still heavily subsidised and their negative externalities for society are not priced.
Public subsidies are also an important element to support bioenergy development.
In 2014, the European Commission published its Guidelines on State Aid for Environmental Protection and Energy 2014-2020, where a market-based auctioning system is promoted for state aid granted to renewable energy installations.
In 2018, the European Commission started working on the post-2020 state aid guidelines. Bioenergy Europe is actively representing the sector’s view towards EU policy-makers. This WG exchanges and discusses the future of state aid for bioenergy with the objective to come with a common position that Bioenergy Europe defends in its advocacy activities.
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