The Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) will begin development of a Bioenergy Roadmap at the request of federal energy minister Angus Taylor.
Taylor announced on Wednesday that leading industry stakeholders would be consulted, followed by broader consultations early next year and a finalisation of the roadmap expected mid-2020.
Bioenergy is sourced from organic and renewable materials (biomass) which can be processed into heat, electricity, biogas and liquid fuels.
The research would seek to quantify competitive advantages enjoyed by Australia. According to ARENA, only 4 per cent of the national energy mix is bioenergy, compared to roughly 7 per cent among OECD nations and 10 per cent in Europe.
The government wanted to grow the sector – as part of efforts to reduce greenhouse emissions by 26 to 28 per cent below 2005 levels before 2030 – and the Bioenergy Roadmap “will help to inform future policy decisions in the bioenergy sector,” said Taylor.
“It’s important to support new and emerging energy sources like bioenergy so that we can continue to deliver extra energy supply to the market, drive down energy prices for families and businesses, and lower emissions.”
The announcement comes as the Bioenergy STRONG showcase in Brisbane begins.
ARENA CEO Darren Miller said the International Energy Agency had identified bioenergy as an “overlooked giant” within the renewable energy sector.
“Much like with hydrogen, we’re hoping that this will lead to further uptake and unlock new opportunities for bioenergy in Australia, and will enable bioenergy to play a considerable role in helping us to reduce emissions while also providing secure, reliable and affordable energy supply,” he said.
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