NEWS AND RESULTS

Twenty member countries of the Biofuture Platform to take a strong Vision Statement to be endorsed in November in Bonn, Germany, during UNFCCC COP23, to elevate the need to scale up a sustainable, low carbon bioeconomy in the global agenda.

São Paulo, October 25, 2017.

 

According to projections of international energy agencies, the use of bioenergy as a share of the world’s energy usage needs to more than double by 2030 if the world is to avoid temperature rises above 2º C. “We simply have no choice. We have to massively scale up bioenergy, and do it fast”, says Paolo Frankl, Head of the Renewable Energy Division at the International Energy Agency (IEA). “Sustainable bioenergy is an indispensable component of the necessary portfolio of low-carbon technologies in ALL climate-change mitigation scenarios”, said Frankl, based on the findings of a key upcoming report on the matter. “And there is a major, major gap between what we need and what is happening today in terms of the speed of deployment and the scale of investments in bioenergy”.

The declarations were made as part of the Biofuture Summit, the first major conference of the Biofuture Platform, a coalition of twenty country governments, industry and the research community launched in November 2016 during UNFCCC COP23 in Marrakesh, aimed at the development of a modern, sustainable, low-carbon bioeconomy. The two-day Summit was held in São Paulo, Brazil, October 24 and 25, with more than 270 delegates from 28 countries coming together to discuss the best ways to face a relevant challenge for the future of humanity: creating a large-scale, sustainable, low-carbon bioeconomy. It was held in partnership with below50, a corporate coalition supported by the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD) aiming to promote low carbon fuels.

Government policy-makers from Brazil, Canada, Finland, India, Italy, UK, the USA, and others openly debated their respective current and future polices and programmes for bioenergy and the bioeconomy, including California’s LCFS, Brazil’s upcoming RenovaBio, Canada’s Clean Fuel Standard, the US’s 1 Billion Ton Bioeconomy Vision and more. The bioeconomy, as defined by the Biofuture participants, is the use of biomass using technology to produce energy, materials and chemicals, as a sustainable, low carbon alternative to fossil based energy and products.

For their part, industry members highlighted key advances in conversion technologies and agricultural revolutions, such as the high-density energy-cane, waste and biomethane usage, cellulosic conversion, and many others. “Technology risk is no longer the main challenge as it was a few years ago, but access to capital resources”, says Bernardo Gradin, CEO of GranBio, a company responsible for one of five first-in-class, commercial scale second generation ethanol plants in the world.

“Human psicology tends to oversimplify things in dicotomies like ‘food versus fuel’ or ‘eletric vehicles versus biofuels’, while any serious analysis taking in consideration the trends, projections, and use cases will expose those dicotomies as false”, says Aloysio Nunes Ferreira, Brazil’s Minister for Foreign Affairs, hosting the summit. “It’s proven that we need electric vehicles, and at the same time a quick deployment of biofuels in the existing vehicle fleet and infrastructure if the world is to meet its climate goals. It’s also proven that with the right combination of policies, technology and regulation, we can produce more food AND more energy, all the while reducing deforestation”, said Mr Nunes.

“Renewable bioenergy solutions to transport are key: as inputs to power for electric vehicles, as biofuels for light vehicles as EVs phase in, and as biofuels for aviation, marine and freight in the long term”, agreed Sakari Oksanen, Deputy Director General of the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA).

"Having little land to spare and many people to feed, India is betting high on second-generation technologies and the use of residues to scale up its bioeconomy using rice and maize straw and other feedstocks", said Y.B. Ramakrishna, Chairman of the Working Group on BioFuels of India’s Ministry of Petroleum & Natural Gas. “The goal in India is to quickly achieve 10% bio-ethanol blending in petrol and 5% bio-diesel blending in diesel by 2022. Indian oil companies are to to set up twelve second generation plants across 11 states of the country.”

There was a clear, emerging consensus among the many views expressed by the 47 speakers and the public of policy makers around a few key messages: 

  1. bioenergy needs to be urgently scaled up, along with an expanded bioeconomy for advanced bioproducts and biomaterials, in order to fight climate change;

  2. there is ample feedstock potential to be sustainably tapped through smart agricultural practices, intensification of livestock, 2nd generation and other advanced biofuels; high-density energy crops, and using rural and urban waste;

  3. besides the climate advantages, the bioeconomy offers huge opportunities for job creation, sustainable development, technological innovation, agriculture intensification and energy security;

  4. Bold, smart policies and stable frameworks will be needed to level the playing field and overcome the huge challenges facing the sector, including lack of investments, policy uncertainty, low oil prices, lack of capital for early stage technologies, fossil fuel subsidies and lack the of a comprehensive sustainability framework.

 

The Summit’s deliberations fed into the Biofuture Vision Statement, a document to be officially endorsed by Ministers and high-level representatives of the 20 Member Countries of the Biofuture Platform in November 16, at the 23rd Conference of the Parties of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC COP23), which takes place from 6 to 17 November in Bonn, in Germany. Among the purposes of the Vision Statement is helping elevate the sustainable low carbon bioeconomy in the global agenda as an urgent solution to combat climate change, and providing a strong signal to markets and investors about the large expected role for the sector in the next decades.

“The Biofuture Platform is a key part of a much needed effort to put back bioenergy in the global agenda”, said Rasmus Valanko, Climate and Energy Director of the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD). “It is a mechanism where governments, private sector and academia are able to very dynamically cooperate”.

Launched by initiative of the government of Brazil, which now serves as its interim Secretariat, the Biofuture Platform has as its Member States Argentina, Brazil, Canada, China, Denmark, Egypt, Finland, France, India, Indonesia, Italy, Morocco, Mozambique, the Netherlands, Paraguay, the Philippines, Sweden, the United Kingdom, the United States and Uruguay. The Platform aims to facilitate political dialogue and collaboration among leading countries, organizations, academia and the private sector, aware of the need to accelerate development and expand the deployment of sustainable low carbon alternatives solutions to fossil fuels in transport, chemicals, plastics and other sectors. The government of Brazil, through its Ministry of Foreign Affairs, currently acts as facilitator of the initiative.

INFORMATION FOR THE MEDIA
Biofuture Summit 2017 - October 24 and 25 (OPENING SESSION 24/10, 8:30 AM)
LOCATION: Estanplaza International Hotel, R. Fernandes Moreira, 1293 - Chácara Santo Antônio, São Paulo - SP.
DATE: October 24th and 25th, 2017
WEBSITE: FULL PROGRAMME, SPEAKER PHOTOS AND BIOS, FREE TO USE PICTURES FROM THE EVENT, STATEMENTS AND PRESENTATIONS IN: www.biofuturesummit.com
MORE ABOUT THE BIOFUTURE PLATFORM: www.biofutureplatform.org
MORE ABOUT below50: www.below50.org
CONTACT: facilitator@biofutureplatform.org

Biofuture Summit to build, in São Paulo, a message for COP23

24-25 October 2017, São Paulo, Brazil

Brazil will host an international meeting in São Paulo, October 24 and 25, aiming at the development of a modern, sustainable and low-carbon bioeconomy. The meeting aims to re-locate low-carbon bioenergy and bioeconomy solutions on the global map as an urgent solution to combat climate change.

Twenty member countries of the Biofuture Platform, an international initiative coordinated by the Brazilian government as interim secretariat, work on a Vision Statement to be endorsed during COP23, which takes place in November in Germany.

The RenovaBio project, under preparation by the Brazilian government, will be highlighted among examples of good practices and advanced public policies, conducted by 20 countries.

LOGISTICS INFORMATION

Biofuture Summit 2017 - October 24 and 25 (OPENING SESSION 24/10, 8:30 AM)

LOCATION: Estanplaza International Hotel, R. Fernandes Moreira, 1293 - Chácara Santo Antônio, São Paulo - SP.

DATE: October 24th and 25th

FULL PROGRAM, REGISTRATION AND FURTHER INFORMATION: http://www.biofuturesummit.com

REGISTRATION: Places are limited and participation is free, with registrations online through the site.

PRESS: Press registrations can be made by the same website, choosing, in the form, the category "MEDIA". A question and answer session will be facilitated to the opening ceremony authorities.

PRESS CONTACT: Felipe Antunes – felipe.antunes@itamaraty.gov.br

The year 2016 was the hottest since data began to be monitored in 1880. In the Arctic, the extent of sea ice in the summer of 2016 was the second lowest ever recorded (4.14 million km2). In some regions of Russia, the temperature was 6 °C or 7 °C above normal. To prevent the planet's situation from becoming unsustainable, the rapid and concomitant adoption of the most diverse low-carbon solutions will be necessary. One of these solutions, the bioeconomy, is the focus of the Biofuture Platform, a group of 20 nations, including Brazil, which will hold its first major conference, the Biofuture Summit 2017, in São Paulo, October 24-25. The event will take place at Hotel Estanplaza International, with the participation of more than 300 delegates from 26 countries. The Biofuture Summit 2017 combines the first conference of the Biofuture Platform and the initiative below50 Roadshow South America in one event.

 

During the Biofuture Summit 2017, governments, the private sector and researchers will discuss the best ways to face a relevant challenge for the future of all humanity: to create a large-scale, sustainable and low-carbon bioeconomy. In the event, participants will seek to highlight the urgent need to scale up the use of sustainable bioenergy to keep global temperatures within internationally agreed levels and will also discuss the potential of each of the actors involved to overcome the barriers and change economic, ecological and productive paradigms.

 

One of the highlights of the  Biofuture Summit 2017 will be RenovaBio, a program that proposes an innovative policy for-low carbon biofuels being developed by the Brazilian government. Similar programs and policies implemented by the USA, India, Canada, the United Kingdom, Italy, and others will also be presented and debated, directly by representatives of each country.

 

The Summit deliberations are expected to contribute to the Biofuture Vision Statement, which will foster increased participation of bioenergy, biofuels and advanced bioproducts by 2030 as a partial alternative to fossil fuels, in order to mitigate the perverse effects of carbon emissions on the environment. The Vision Statement is to be endorsed by the 20 member countries of the initiative at the COP23 of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), which takes place from 6 to 17 November in Bonn, in Germany.

 

Promoted and hosted by the Brazilian government, which is acting as facilitator of the Biofuture Platform, the Summit will have panels on Climate Scenarios and the need to expand the bioeconomy; Overcoming current challenges and identifying future policy options; Policies for the bioeconomy; Low-carbon fuels; and Bioproducts and biorrefine. In its final phase, there will be a debate on “What are the priority policy mechanisms to urgently expand the bioeconomy?”, including the preliminary presentation of the proposed text for the Vision Statement of the Biofuture Platform, to be adopted by the governments of the countries members of the initiative. In addition to this document, the contribution of the private sector, derived from the panels and from the debate on “Recapitulation of industrial evolution and discussion of the results of the private sector summit, is also foreseen.

 

Among the authorities and prominent speakers are:

 

Foreign Minister Aloysio Nunes; the Minister of Mines and Energy, Fernando Coelho Filho; the Governor of the State of São Paulo, Geraldo Alckmin; the President of Apex-Brasil, Roberto Jaguaribe; the Deputy Executive Director of the International Energy Agency (IEA), Paul Simons; the Deputy Director-General of the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA), Sakari Oksanen; the President of CEBDS-WBCSD Brazil, Marina Grossi; the global CEO of DuPont Industrial Biosciences, William Feehery; the CEO of GranBio, Bernardo Gradin; the Director-General of the Ministry of the Environment, Land and Sea of ​​Italy, Francesco La Camera; the Director of Energy and Climate of the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD), Rasmus Valanko; the Head of the Secretariat of the Clean Energy Ministerial Conference (CEM), Christian Zinglersen; the Director of Renewable Energies of the International Energy Agency, Paolo Franklin; the Chairman of the Biofuels Working Group of the Ministry of Petroleum of India, Y.B. Ramakhrisna; Jan Lewandrowski, senior economist at the US Department of Agriculture; the representative of civil society at the National Energy Policy Council, Plínio Nastari; among others.

 

ARRIVING AT COP23

The proposal to be outlined during the Biofuture Summit in São Paulo will arrive at COP23, which will take place in Bonn from 6 to 17 November, through a Biofuture Platform event officially sponsored by Brazil on November 16. This event will bring together the Ministries of Environment (MMA), Foreign Affairs (MRE) and Mines and Energy (MME) in a joint initiative that will focus on the need to accelerate the development of the bioeconomy and the necessary policies to do so. This is a relevant topic for compliance with the Brazilian National Contribution (NDC), which shows the continuity of the work developed since COP 22, with the launch of the Biofuture Platform and the RenovaBio program.

 

KNOW MORE

 

ABOUT THE BIOFUTURE PLATFORM

The Biofuture Platform is a multisectoral mechanism, launched at the Brazilian initiative last November at COP22, bringing together Argentina, Brazil, Canada, China, Denmark, Egypt, Finland, France, India, Indonesia, Italy, Morocco, Mozambique, Paraguay, the Philippines, Sweden, the United Kingdom, the United States and Uruguay. The Platform aims to facilitate political dialogue and collaboration among leading countries, organizations, academia and the private sector, aware of the need to accelerate development and expand the deployment of sustainable low carbon alternatives solutions to fossil fuels in transport, chemicals, plastics and other sectors. Brazil, through the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, currently acts as facilitator of the initiative.

 

ABOUT the below50

The below50 is a global collaboration that aims to boost the development of the global and national market for sustainable fuels. The project seeks to create demand for fuels that, like ethanol and biodiesel, emit 50% less CO2 than traditional fuels. The below50 proposes to:

• Increase the number of companies that opt ​​for fuels below50;

• Create intersectoral opportunities through supply chains;

• Demonstrate that below50 fuels have an economic, social and environmental appeal;

• Address legislative and financial barriers to supplying fuels below50.

 

ABOUT RENOVABIO

RenovaBio is a policy that seeks to draw up a joint strategy to recognize the strategic role of all types of biofuels in the Brazilian energy matrix, both for energy security and mitigation of greenhouse gas emission. Unlike traditional measures, RenovaBio does not propose the creation of a carbon tax, subsidies, presumed credit or volumetric mandates for the addition of biofuels to fuels, and is based on recognition of the objectively calculated environmental benefits of biofuels in the transport sector, rewarding the most clean and efficient.

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