- Storable energy, versatile use
- Available in almost all countries
- Can be used to balance fluctuations in volatile electricity feed-in from renewable energy sources such as wind and solar energy
- Use of waste products e. g. animal waste, household waste, crops etc.
People have been using biomass to generate energy since ancient times. However, the options available today are much more efficient than merely biomass burning. The one constant is that biomass can only release as much carbon dioxide (CO2) as was previously bound in the organisms during their growth. That makes biomass a CO2-neutral fuel and therefore a renewable form of energy.
Biomass, in solid, liquid or gas form, is very versatile in its range of possible applications, and is used to generate electricity and heat and as fuel for transport vehicles. And, in contrast to wind and solar energy, it can be used only when needed. In this way, it makes a valuable contribution to stabilising the energy system.
The most common types of bioenergy plant in Germany are those used for wood burning and gasification, as well as biomass plants used in agriculture, industry and private homes. Biofuels are one of the most significant renewable alternatives used in transport.
In light of the ambitious EU targets of 20% renewable energy and 10% biofuels by 2020, bioenergy is already near the top of the political agenda in Europe. The German biogas sector ranks among the pioneers in this area.