News & Media

EU transport still overly reliant on fossil fuels

11/07/2019

The EU’s energy sector is still overwhelmingly reliant on fossil fuels, which in 2017 represented 93% of final energy consumption in transport while renewables were only about 5% of transport energy.

The findings, in a new report from Bioenergy Europe with input from ePURE, once again highlight the need for urgent action to decarbonise European transport with a prompt shift to low-emission mobility. “Biofuels such as bioethanol and biodiesel are effective at curbing GHG emissions and require no major vehicle or infrastructure changes,” the report states. “They should be allowed to play a much larger role in decarbonisation.”

The report makes several recommendations for a shift in EU renewable energy policy, including:

  • Recognise the important role of biofuels in transport decarbonisation now and in the decades to come. While all available alternative fuel options will be needed to decarbonise EU transport sector, conventional biofuels are already contributing with no systemic or fleet change required. In the future, the combination of renewable electricity-based, biofuels and other low-carbon solutions will curb the current high level of GHG emissions.
  • Ensure R&D incentives and support to accelerate market deployment of advanced biofuels keeping in mind that companies support their investments in advanced biofuels through the production of conventional biofuels.
  • Ensure investment predictability and guarantee continuity by reflecting the recent Renewable Energy Directive provisions and sustainability criteria in any long-term policy. Regulatory consistency will help mobilise the investments needed to meet the EU’s long-term decarbonisation objectives.
  • Revise the Energy Taxation Directive to be in line with EU climate and energy policy, promoting for example a carbon tax on fossil fuels. The current Energy taxation’s volume-based approach has led to the detrimental situation in which fossil fuels are taxed at lower rates than their low-carbon and renewable alternatives.

To read the full report, click here.

For a summary of the key findings and policy brief, click here.