Newsletter EUBIA
March 2018

Biomass Industry Official Newsletter : BE Sustainable Magazine

The EU Corner

European leaders continue to move forwards Paris Agreements’ targets
Another European Council just took place in Brussels, gathering there all 28 EU leaders. The discussion focused mainly on jobs, growth and competitiveness, nevertheless the debate also involved the energy & environment sector. During the meeting, EU leaders called on the Commission to present a long-term Strategy for greenhouse gas emissions reduction in accordance with the Paris Agreement. The proposal is expected for the first quarter of 2019.
Find here all the EU Council conclusions
Farmers’ opinion on the future of the CAP
The communication “The Future of Food and Farming” published in December by the European Commission’ revamped the discussing on the future of CAP after 2020. According to Copa-Cogeca and other EU farmers’ association, a simplified CAP with a long-term perspective and a focus on digitisation would attract more young people and more investments. The discussion stressed how CAP is currently too bureaucratic and, therefore, not as effective as it could be. Nevertheless, the common EU framework should be protected, and simplification should not undermine its added-value. Another issue is that a simplification of CAP at European level could have negative effects on the national side, bringing more difficulties for its local implementation. To avoid this, the only solution is to settle clear objectives embraced in a fixed timetable.
Read more on EURACTIV
Further steps towards a greener economy: the sustainable finance Action Plan
Europe is making a step more towards meeting the Paris Agreement engagements. After the settlement of the High-Level Expert Group on sustainable finance in 2016, the Commission unveiled its Action Plan to achieve a greener and cleaner economy, and kick-started the reform of the European financial system by hosting a high-level conference on Sustainable finance. The initiative is based on a report from the High-Level Expert Group published last January, where 8 priority actions were identified.
Read more about the Action Plan and the High-Level Conference
What's new in the European Parliament
Updates from the ITRE Committee
During its March meeting, the ITRE Committee expressed its vote on several dossiers, among which the adoption of the draft opinion on the “Implementation of the Ecodesign Directive” (rapporteur Michèle Rivasi). Other ongoing negotiation concerns the “Proposal for a directive of the European Parliament and of the Council on the promotion of the use of energy from renewable sources (recast)” rapporteur José Blanco López; and the “Proposal for a directive of the European Parliament and of the Council amending Directive 2012/27/EU on energy efficiency” rapporteur Miroslav Poche. 

The revised Energy Efficiency Directive is part of the Clean Energy package and wants to align the European legislation to the 2030 climate and energy goals. The text was debated twice in the Council and the European Parliament voted its position in the January plenary session. The trilogue negotiations started last month and are currently ongoing.

Read more on the ITRE committee newsletter
Where are we with the waste directive?
In 2015, the European Commission published an Action Plan to revise the 2008 directive on waste. It was the sparkle starting the discussion on the “Circular Economy Package”. The initiative set ambitious targets to tackle the topic of waste and recycling, and change consumers' and producers' approach from linear to circular. The rapporteur of the initiative, MEP Simona Bonafè (S&D) managed to obtain even more ambitious targets, compared to the Commission's proposal: by 2025, at least 55% of municipal waste should be recycled, raising the amount to 65% by 2035; member States are oblige to reduce landfill to a maximum of 10% of waste by 2035; and there will be a separate collection for packaging waste.

Today, after long and lengthy negotiations between the Parliament and the Council, the Directive is ready to be adopted. The text approved by the Council is expected to be formally adopted in the April plenary session of the Parliament.

Go through the Waste directive history here

News in one minute

A roadmap for renewables' development in Europe
IRENA, the International Renewable Energy Agency published a report on the EU 2030 prospects for renewable energy. The study, wanted by the European Commission, is part of IRENA’s roadmap on renewables: REmap. The objective was to identify cost-effective options for member States to achieve the 27% target for renewable energy, and create an open platform to measure the overall impact of renewables development in Europe. The study identifies as well areas where further action will be needed, and the progresses which can be achieved if the proper framework is implemented.

Installed power generation capacity by technology and EU Member State
The picture compares a REmap improved renewable energy scenario with “Reference 2030” a scenario based on current national energy plans and goals to 2030. Download here the REmap study.
World Water Day 2018 - Nature for Water
March 22nd was 2018 World Water Day, an annual initiative to raise awareness on the importance of water. In the last decades, EU member States made several progresses in reducing the amount of waste released into rivers and inland waters, but the situation should further be improved. This year’s edition was dedicated to the theme “Nature for Water”, focusing on the use of nature-based solutions to tackle water issues. The European Environmental Agency as well emphasized the initiative.
Read more about it here
Microplastics’ impact in marine ecosystem
How much plastic is released in our seas and rivers every day? An Italian initiative, gathering both scientists and citizens, is trying to make clarity on this issue. The group is carrying on both observations with chemical reagents and visual analysis on the turbidity of water samples, and collecting plastics to better understand their composition. The data collected are included in the EU project POSEIDOMM, with the objective of identifying microplastics’ characteristics and develop new methods to reduce their presence. The project is developing the study of microplastics’ effects on biological and chemical processes at the marine surface but more work still needs to be done.
Read here the full story
An interactive map for campaigns and statistics
You can finally access all the selected SIMPLE and MULTI programmes for 2017 in one single interactive map! Choose a country to see all programmes’ statistics promoted there, and discover more details as the market targeted or the budget involved. Filter your research by year of approval, target country, product sector and select the campaigns of your interest.
The details of each campaign will appear once you clicked on their title.
Find all the details on Chafea’s interactive map

Don't miss your call

BBI JU 2018 Call for proposals opening soon

The BBI JU is ready to open its 2018 call for proposals for research and innovation following 4 strategic orientations: Feedstock, Process, Products, and Market uptake. The calls will be open in April until September 2018. Proposals will be evaluated in October-November and the results of the selection will be published towards the end of the year. An info day will be held in Brussels on the 17th of April to provide information on rules for application.
Call for experts for the EIP-AGRI Focus Group: 
Reducing food loss on the farm
Are you a professional in the field of the European farming sector?
EIP-AGRI is looking for 20 experts to join its Focus Group and answer this core question:
Which new on-farm practices and technologies can limit food loss?

Farmers, advisers and researchers are welcome to share their knowledge and experience, in order to assure a concrete impact in the farming field. The aim of the Focus Group is to explore problems and opportunities of the food loss topic, and identify innovative solutions learning from previous projects’ experience.

The Focus Group will meet at least twice, in a 12 to 18 months period, and the first meeting is already scheduled for 12 and 13 September 2018. On the EIP-AGRI dedicated website you will learn more about the initiative and find the application form.
Please note that the initiative is included in a general call for expression of interest for a total of three Focus Groups: New feed for pigs and poultry, Protecting fruit production from frost damage, Reducing food loss on the farm. The deadline for application is 3 April 2018 23:59 hrs CET.
Call for expression of interest:
Experts in agriculture promotion
Chafea, the Consumers, Health, Agriculture and Food Executive Agency is looking for experts in the promotion of agricultural products. The selected experts will help in several tasks, among which: evaluation of project proposals, monitor of their implementation and assistance in the evaluation of tenders in public procurement procedures regarding EU agricultural products. Other activities may include the development of communication strategy, advertising, event management and public relations. The call was launched on 24/09/2015 and will remain opened for 5 years. Experts selected from Chafea may be offered a contract according to the call and will be paid on a daily amount of 450€.
Willing to apply? Find further information and indications in the Registration guide and submit your application on the Participants Portal.
Want to promote your agri-food products? Apply for EU-funding
To enhance the competitiveness of its agricultural sector, the EU provides funding for information and promotion measures to foster agricultural products. The aim is to raise citizens’ awareness on the merits of European agricultural products and the high-quality standards that they pursue. Furthermore, the calls want to support producers in selling their products in a competitive market, both inside the Union or when dealing with third countries. Finally, the objective is to boost the European market share for agricultural products and protect it from issues like market disturbance, or the lake of consumers’ confidence which may endanger the sector.

Want to learn more about EU farm products promotion campaigns? Discover all you need to know about it here
PRIMA call for proposals for the agro-food and water sectors
PRIMA is the Partnership for R&I in the Mediterranean Sea. The association supports innovative projects to foster the development of Mediterranean societies. PRIMA published its first call for proposals for projects fostering sustainability in the agro-food and water sector:
  • Management of Water
    Topic: Water reuse and water desalination for agricultural and food production
  • Farming Systems
    Topic: Improving the sustainability of Mediterranean agro-ecosystems
  • Agro-food Value Chains
    Topic: Implementing innovation in Mediterranean Agro-food chains by smallholders and SMEs
The calls are either RIA or IA. Please note that the deadline for the above mentioned calls is April 17th.
Find more information on the dedicated website.

Updates from the world

EU facing China's trash ban influence
For years the European Union has promoted its leadership in environmental issues and circular economy. However, part of this “green success” was based on exporting European waste elsewhere, especially to China. At the end of 2017, Beijing decided to stop this practice, pressed by a middle class suffering the side effects of garbage and pollution.  
The government set strict limits on imports of foreign waste, and after a few months, Europe is struggling to deal with the issue. Member States which already collect waste separately, like the Netherlands, have been relatively unaffected. Europe is trying to promote its vision for a greener economy, publishing its communication for a European wide Plastics Strategy and considering a tax on plastics to make recycled materials more attractive, given that oil and fossil fuels based materials remain more competitive.

Read the full POLITICO’s provocative article
EUBIA March activities
MEPs meetings
EUBIA was proactively meeting several MEPs and their assistants this month. We discussed the Fertilisers Regulation with MEP Marc Tarabella, from the Agriculture and Rural Development Committee (AGRI), and we talk about the waste directive and circular economy with MEP Simona Bonafè, from the committee on Environment, Public Health and Food Safety (ENVI). EUBIA is building on these enriching experiences to continue its close collaboration with MEPs in the future.
EUBIA's Deputy Secretary General won the 2018 @Association Awards!

EUBIA is glad to announce that its Deputy Secretary General, Ms Drilona Shtjefni was awarded as the best Young Association Executive of 2018. Each year, the Association International & European awards selects the most successful executives of the year, and for its 2018 edition, it recognised the success and efforts made by Ms Shtjefni in her job at EUBIA. The ceremony followed the international women day, and it reflected a good gender balance among the winners. Being not only young, but also a woman, Ms Shtjefni is particularly sensitive to this issue, and she strongly supports this call for an increased women’s leadership.
2018 FFA: Forum for the Future of Agriculture
EUBIA participated in the 2018 Forum for the Future of Agriculture, which took place in Brussels on 27th March. The event was the occasion to learn more about inspiring stories related to the agro-food sector, and discuss innovative solution for the future of sustainable farming. The 2018 edition of FFA saw the participation of several keynote speakers as Her Majesty Queen Noor Al Hussein of Jordan, Frans Timmermans Vice-President of the EU Commission, Phil Hogan Commissioner for Agriculture and Rural Development, and several other experts from the United Nations, international organisation and the private sector.
Learn more and get inspired here

Meet us @
EUBCE European Biomass Conference and Exhibition

The EUBCE is taking place in Copenhagen on 14th - 18 May  2018.
EUBIA's member will have the opportunity to participate to networking cocktail, have a dedicated exposition space, as well as discounted rate for registration.

The Conference programme is available here.
Find here the website more information about the event.
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