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European Energy policy after 2020 should boost the energy transition

The Port of Rotterdam wants to be a frontrunner in the transition from a fossil -based industry to a more sustainable, biobased economy that focuses on renewable energy and raw materials, CO2 reduction and circular production. To achieve that, a long-term stable legislative framework is required. The European Commission has recently proposed a revision of the European Renewable Energy Directive (REDII). The proposed amendments to the current Renewable Energy Directive describe how Member States - individually and jointly - should contribute to the EU's renewable energy target by 2030 in three sectors, namely: electricity, heating and cooling and transport. For the Port of Rotterdam, it is important that the REDII provides the right incentives so that companies and governments can effectively make the transition towards a sustainable, energy-efficient and biobased economy.

To achieve this, the following preconditions are necessary:

  • An ambitious renewable energy target at European level and its translation into binding national targets
  • Room for Member States to implement the renewable energy target as a CO2 reduction target at national level
  • A harmonized European framework with sustainability criteria for solid biomass to ensure that biomass is interchangeable and a true European market for biomass can develop
  • With regard to the co-firing of biomass: maintain financial support for biomass co-firing including non-CHP plants. In addition, the directive should not only refer to the use of biomass in energy production, but should also have an eye for higher-quality applications of biomass, for example in chemistry. In order to fully develop the biobased economy, several applications of biomass are necessary in which the cascading principle must be leading.
  • First generation biofuels that meet the sustainability requirements of the directive and that do not carry a high ILUC risk should count towards the renewable energy targets and must not be capped
  • Maintaining the multiplier for advanced biofuels in maritime transport in order to move this sector to lower emission alternatives
  • Guaranteed open access for industrial residual heat on local heat networks. This point relates to our plans for the construction of a backbone infrastructure in the port that can transport heat to, amongst others, households, greenhouses in the region and companies.

Below is the response from the Port of Rotterdam Authority to the revised Renewable Energy Directive.

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