Role of biomass in achieving net zero
Biomass is under the spotlight, and having played a prominent role in our efforts to decarbonise the economy, the government is now undertaking a call for evidence to strengthen the evidence base around biomass and will contribute to a review of the potential for biomass to support the UK’s net zero target.
Responses to the call for evidence will help inform future policy in this area, and the development of a biomass strategy. Government is now inviting evidence and views on:
- availability of sustainable biomass from domestic and international sources
- potential end uses to support our net zero target in the context of availability of sustainable biomass feedstocks
- the sustainability of the supply chain and opportunities for strengthening existing criteria
- accounting of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from biomass use
- bioenergy with carbon capture and storage technology and its potential applications to deliver negative emissions
- opportunities for innovation to support wider deployment of technologies with potential to support the net zero target
Call for Evidence
This Call for Evidence seeks evidence and views from stakeholders on the potential for biomass to support the UK’s net zero target. This includes opportunities and risks of using different biomass feedstocks for a variety of end uses, as well as the potential benefits and trade-offs that should be considered in different applications. Sustainable biomass is a unique renewable organic material, in that there is a wide array of applications in which it can be used as a substitute for fossil-fuel based products and activities, from power generation to hydrogen production and even in new forms of plastics. Along with its ability to deliver negative emissions, this makes biomass a valuable tool for reaching net zero emissions.
This Call for Evidence is open until 15th June 2021.
Domestic Renewable Heat Incentive
In addition, in preparation for the formal closure of the Domestic Renewable Heat Incentive scheme to new applicants, the government intends to make some changes to the administration of the scheme in order to future-proof the DRHI until the last RHI payments are made in 2029. Government would like to hear views on these proposed amendments from industry, stakeholders, and members of the public.
- Reform proposals include:
- Allowing for updated versions of installation standards, calculators, and consumer codes of practice;
- Reducing the amount of reporting that BEIS will publish about the DRHI after it closes;
- Amending some of the processes around metering for payment, and metering and monitoring service packages (MMSPs) to make administration more efficient and flexible; and
- Introducing mandatory annual maintenance checks, and raising fuel quality standards, for biomass installations, bringing the DRHI in line with recommendations in the April 2020 government response to the ‘Renewable Heat Incentive: biomass combustion in urban areas’ consultation.
The consultation closes on the 7th May and can be accessed here.
This consultation relates to the Domestic Renewable Heat Incentive scheme which operates across Great Britain. The Renewable Heat Incentive scheme for Northern Ireland is a separate and unrelated scheme.
We recommend everyone involved in the biomass supply chain contributes to the call for evidence and DRHI consultation.