The role of industrial biorefineries in a low-carbon economy
Paper in proceedings, 2018
This paper shows opportunities of biorefineries in different sectors and presents recommendations for research, industry and policy, based on a joint interactive workshop of IEA Bioenergy and IETS. Efficient use of the available biomass, with combined production of renewable fuels, chemicals and materials will be key and uptake of biorefineries at industrial level will be required to achieve the required greenhouse gas reduction by 2050. The biorefinery sector needs to build up over the next decades and a major transition in industry will be required to realise a low-carbon economy. Industrial symbioses and increased integration with a versatile production of added-value biobased products and bioenergy products can have highest impact both for climate goals and economic growth. Current developments in biorefineries are building on the long success of several industries, such as sugar and starch processing, paper and pulp as well as biotechnology and also developments in conventional and advanced biofuels. Governments can facilitate the deployment of biorefineries through different mechanisms highlighted in the paper. It is crucial to have involvement and commitments of industry sectors and cooperation of different stakeholders, as well as multidisciplinary research, communication and education.