Monday, October 21, 2019

Advantages of Biofuel: The New Sustainable Oil-Fields Of Tomorrow

Biofuels play a major part in the renewable energy strategy of Denmark.

Denmark is using biofuel to achieve its target of using 100% renewable energy for all energy uses by 2050. In this, biofuels provide a large share of he future energy sources in Denmark. Especially when considering all sectors of energy demand in conjunction with Denmark's highly developed renewable energy resources.

The main sources of biofuels in Denmark include:
  • wood and wood products
  • energy from waste straw
  • biogas biodiesel and bioethanol.

Biofuels have the potential to provide environmental and economic benefits, but they must be carefully managed to ensure that they are truly sustainable resources.

There is the potential for economic and environmental damage if biofuels are not used responsibly. Biofuel use in Europe must be certified by the EU Commission before biofuels can be recorded as sustainable resources, and used for national renewable energy targets.

The oil shocks of the 1970s severely impacted Denmark as about 90% of its energy use then came from oil. The majority of that oil was imported. So, the government was thus compelled to rethink its energy portfolio.

It shifted the focus of its energy plans as a result biomass for bioenergy started being incentivized. Even way back then, it was promoted as a renewable energy source, and an alternative to fossil fuels. Denmark's aim was to reduce the oil dependency and to secure energy supplies.

That's an objective that has remained relevant in the progression of the country's energy policy to this day.

The prospect of the creation of new jobs in the utilization of waste products also factored into Denmark's decision to start using biomass, consequently the use of biomass in the Danish energy system has continuously grown.

In the last decade bio energy consumption in Denmark has nearly doubled, increasing by more than a factor of 12 between 1970 and present day.

Over this period biomass has been predominantly used in the form of waste straw and wood.

Image shows one advantage of biofuel as an energy source for transport.
Currently Denmark is striving to create an energy system by 2050 that is free of all fossil energy. so, bioenergy will likely play a key role in order to achieve this goal.

In addition, Denmark has since 1993 been increasing its development of large-scale combined heat and power plants.

CHP plants combust biomass and do it in a way that has achieved continuous technological improvements. Many improvements have been achieved over the past 20 years.

The Danish strategy to reduce emissions has also included retrofitting older coal-fired plants to make them biomass-fired.

They are investing heavily into research development and demonstration (RD&D) for converting agricultural residues into second generation 2g bio ethanol.

Bio ethanol which is then blended with gasoline for the transportation sector.

RD&D activities are also in place for biodiesel for shipping and Road Transport in agreement with the European Environment Agency, scientific committee.

Denmark considers environmental sustainability as a key component of its strategy to incorporate a greater share of biofuels into its energy portfolio. As such, it does not consider biomass produced from existent forests as carbon neutral. But, it counts waste.

Biomass has doubled in output towards its renewable energy target, thus favoring biomass grown on marginal land or sourced from residues. This way the country is able to ensure that it benefits from incorporating a larger share of biomass into its energy system.

Biomass sourced from plantations that have been converted from natural forest land then generates a net carbon benefit over fossil fuels.

Denmark's guidelines for utilising biomass for energy and transportation strive to ensure both environmental sustainability and efficiency aspects as a member state of the European Union (EU). Denmark is working under commitments from its directives which set targets for the amount of renewable energy within the national profiles including biofuels.

It is following the EU legislation. For example its renewable energy use should reach 100% by 2020.

However, Denmark has been highly proactive and ambitious in the targets it has set for its renewable energy in greenhouse gas emissions reduction. Such as aiming for 100% renewable energy by 2050.

Source: Wikipedia article.

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