The Australian Forest Products Association (AFPA) strongly welcomes the Morrison Government’s announcement that the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) has been tasked to develop a Bioenergy Roadmap.
The roadmap will identify the role that the bioenergy sector can play in Australia’s energy transition and help lower Australia’s emission’s, CEO of AFPA Mr Ross Hampton said today.
“Forest products manufacturers continue to face increasing electricity and gas energy costs, threatening regional jobs and economic activity. Bioenergy uniquely, provides renewable and dispatchable energy complementing existing power generation and intermittent renewables like wind and solar.
“Australia has yet to fully recognise the potential of bioenergy, including renewable heat, to secure our energy future, address energy affordability, underpin manufacturing and make a significant contribution to Australia’s emission reduction targets. The development of a Bioenergy Roadmap by ARENA and the inclusion of bioenergy opportunities for heat, steam and power are important steps in this direction.”
Energy from biomass, such as forestry, industry and agriculture residues is a unique renewable that can be used across all three energy sectors (transport, heat and electricity). The CO2 released by the combustion of the renewable wood waste is captured by new plants as they regrow in a sustainable cycle.
Under the Kyoto Protocol, bioenergy is regarded as CO2 neutral. The United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change also defines bioenergy as renewable, if it is produced from biomass that is sustainably managed – as Australia’s commercial forestry operations are.
“Over the last few years and in the lead up to the last Federal Election, AFPA advocated for funding of a National Biofutures Roadmap and recognition of bioenergy and renewable heat to underpin future opportunities in our renewable forest industries. We look forward to working with ARENA and other bioenergy industry stakeholders on the bioenergy roadmap and achieve the recognition and supportive policies that bioenergy rightfully deserves,” Mr Hampton said.