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The European Academies’ Science Advisory Council (EASAC) has released a commentary and press release on carbon neutrality and energy generated from forest biomass, encouraging policymakers to reconsider their current approach to bioenergy from forests, in light of a recast of an EU renewable energy directive on 14 June 2018.

EASAC notes that, in the past year, interest in how forest biomass should be regarded has increased significantly. The two documents draw on and re-emphasize the messages of a 2017 EASAC report titled, ‘Multi-functionality and Sustainability in the European Union’s Forests,’ which highlights the multiple functions of European forests, including raw materials, leisure and biodiversity, and the conflicts between their different uses. The report finds that carbon emissions per unit of electricity generated from forest biomass exceed those from coal.

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