Bioenergy Competition – interim results
On 19th December in Stuttgart, the state secretary of the Baden-Württemberg Ministry of Economic Affairs, Richard Drautz, presented the Bioenergy Competition results for the second half of 2008. The best projects are being given funding of almost one million euros.
The first Baden-Württemberg Bioenergy Competition comes with an annual purse of around 2 million euros in funding for project organisations and their projects. Once every three months, the proposals submitted before the respective deadlines (4 per year) will be evaluated by an advisory committee consisting of representatives of associations, government and science. Drautz explained that the Bioenergy funding concept is quite broad: "The projects do not have to focus on one particular type of fuel and one particular energy technology. Of greater importance is the opening of the fuel spectrum to types of biomass that have previously been barely used or not used at all. This includes residues from agricultural and landscape work as well as straw and hay and is directed at technologies focusing on innovation and energy efficiency."
One and a half years into the Bioenergy Competition, Drautz gave a short summary of the recently funded projects: Fifty proposals have been submitted of which 22 projects were selected for funding. Grants totalling almost 3.3 million euros have so far been awarded and investments totalling 24 million euros have so far been made. Funding has been awarded in particular to projects involving highly innovative technical solutions, projects dealing with biomass for the production of energy that had previously not been used a great deal and to projects characterised by excellent energy efficiency. Drautz: "Our Bioenergy Competition has become a very successful funding programme. Since the funded projects have a model character for those who may be interested in such projects in the future, I am very confident that the competition will move the efficient use of bioenergy forward."
The Baden-Württemberg government's priorities for energy policy - the doubling or trebling of bioenergy use - require the further expansion of the use of biomass for energy. The outstandingly energy-efficient projects that are receiving funding will, together with associated follow-up projects, be able to make a considerable contribution to this objective. State Secretary Drautz called for farmers, small- and medium-sized companies as well as municipalities and administrative districts to continue participating in the Bioenergy Competition and to come up with excellent ideas and innovative projects.
The next deadline for submission of projects to the Bioenergy Competition is 31st January 2009.