Unlocking the Potential of the EU Knowledge Based Bio-Economy: Innovating Towards Sustainablity

31.05.2011

Brussels, 31 May 2011

This evening, a high level panel of speakers will meet in the European Parliament to discuss how to unlock the potential of the EU Knowledge Based Bio-Economy (KBBE). 

The event, which will be hosted by Sirpa Pietikäinen MEP, will explore the fundamental link between a supportive policy in the future CAP, climate action, energy, trade and the environment sectors to ensure the KBBE is a key driver for smart, sustainable and inclusive economic growth in Europe.

Speakers will include Maive Rute, Director, Biotechnologies, Argriculture & Food, DG Research and Innovation; Ian Hudson, President of DuPont Europe, Middle East & Africa and Chair of EuropaBio’s Industrial Biotechnology Council; Lena Ek, MEP, ITRE Committee and Substitute on AGRI Committee; Arnaud Petit, Director, Commodities & Trade, COPA-COGECA; Josefine Loriz-Hoffman, Head of Unit for Consistency of Rural Development, DG Argriculture and Rural Development and Lars Hansen, Regional President Europe, Novozymes.

Sirpa Pietikäinen MEP stated: “The bio-economy and bio-based products could help us save up to 2.5 billion tons of CO2per year by 2030. The upcoming Bio-economy strategy will be instrumental for Europe’s resource efficiency and is expected to generate green growth and jobs. However, Europe needs to engage all stakeholders and decision makers from different fields, from agriculture to industry, in order to create a strong bio-economy.”

Worth nearly €2 trillion and providing approximately 22 million jobs in areas such as agriculture, fisheries, forestry, food processes, bio-based chemicals and biofuels, the KBBE is of  paramount importance to the European economy.  Europe has the potential to be a world leader in this area but greater intergrated stakeholder engagement, as well as a more holistic appoach to policy measures, needs to be in place.

Ian Hudson, Chair of EuropaBio’s Industrial Biotechnology Council, said “We need more emphasis on policies that improve land productivity and management in a sustainable way.  If Europe is serious about developing a powerful bio-based economy, the new CAP must take account of all of the uses of feedstock, both for industry purposes and for food. As part of this, the exchange of views currently taking place on the CAP, the KBBE and the Common Strategic Framework for Research and Innovation led by Commissioners Ciolos and Geoghegan-Quinn need to include policy measures to support the development of biorefineries. This is essential for Europe to be a leader in the development of smarter more sustainable products and processes whilst helping to revitalise rural communities.”

The event will see the official launch of a recently completed study by Bloomberg New Energy Finance on bioproducts.  The report concluded that the collection and use of agricultural residues as feedstock for bioproducts can increase European farmer’s revenues and bring significant benefits in terms of job creation, energy security and reduction of greenhouse gas emissions.  Lars Hansen, President for Europe of Novozymes, will outline the study's policy recommendations to ensure the EU unlocks the value of its agricultural residue resource. 

EuropaBio Secretary General Nathalie Moll concluded “The bio-based economy offers Europe the potential to accelerate its transition to a more sustainable growth model while developing a globally competitive sector capable of generating jobs. It is perfeclty aligned with the strategic priorities set out by Presdient Barroso in the Europe 2020 strategy. The EU must develop a holistic and consistent approach to policy and ensure that the bio-based economy is treated as a top priority. I look forward to the debate at the European Parliament as a key step forward amongst policy makers is making the goal of a truly bio-based Europe become a reality”.

If you require more information or would like to attend the event and already have an access pass for the parliament, please contact:

Joanna Dupont Inglis
Director, Industrial Biotechnology
Tel: +32 2 739 11 84
Gsm: +32 476 607 135
 
Rosalind Travers
Communications & Association Liaison Officer
Tel: +32 2 739 11 73
Gsm: +32 478 680 301
 

About EuropaBio

EuropaBio's mission is to promote an innovative and dynamic biotechnology based industry in Europe. EuropaBio, (the European Association for Bioindustries), has 66 corporate and 7 associate members operating worldwide, 4 Bioregions and 22  national biotechnology associations representing some 1800 small and medium sized enterprises. www.europabio.org