BEE project concentrates on harmonising the biomass resource assessments in Europe and its neighbouring countries. This harmonisation will improve consistency, accuracy and reliability of biomass assessments, which can serve the planning of a transition to renewable energy in the European Union. Ifeu develops the status of biomass resource assessments and the report of the same name (D3.6).
The major focus will be on methodological and dataset harmonisations fostered by ongoing research of a multi-disciplinary team of project participants, and on the opportunities of utilising both earth observation and terrestrial data for biomass assessments and the integration of multiple data sources. The relevant sectors that are investigated are forestry, energy crops, residues from traditional agriculture and waste.
Reliable knowledge of the biomass potentials for energy in Europe is essential basic information needed for both policy and industry to achieve the challenging European policy targets in the renewable energy sector. However, biomass resource potential assessments for energy for the same geographical entity differ largely from each other. The most significant reasons for the considerable variation in the results are the heterogeneity of general methodological approaches used, datasets used, the methods used to identify the land potential for energy crop plantations, factors and assumptions used to consider the production and utilisation of biomass, and approaches used for the integration of technological learning curves, both in the production sector of biomass and in the biomass-to-energy conversion. Additionally, empirical data for certain aspects (e.g. conversion factors, waste fractions, yields) is missing. Furthermore, the scope of existing biomass resource assessments vary with regard to the considered biomass categories, the scale of the analysis, the timeframe of the analysis, and the type of potentials considered.
The overall objective of the project is to improve the accuracy and comparability of future biomass resource assessments for energy by reducing heterogeneity, increasing harmonisation and exchanging knowledge.The assessment of both single biomass categories and overall assessments including all categories, both at the supranational level (e.g. at the EU level) and at the national and local level, will be subject to that harmonisation. Relevant methodologies and data issues per major estimation steps for each biomass category will be analysed for improvement and harmonisation potential.