Bioenergy covers – more than any other renewable energy – a wide range of raw materials and conversion technologies. In general, more than two thirds of biomass consumed in Europe consists of solid biomass (69%). Biogas and biofuels represent 12% and 13% of gross inland energy consumption of biomass and biowaste. Finally, renewable municipal waste used for energy purposes reached 7% in 2014. Solid biomass is therefore the market driver for bioenergy, essentially comprising woody biomass. However, wood fuel is quite heterogeneous as it includes logs, chips and pellets. This diversity makes it difficult to properly assess the breakdown of each type of biomass products consumed in Europe.
In 2015, thanks to different research projects, AEBIOM was able to offer a comprehensive insight on how woody biomass is consumed at EU level. The residential sector is still the main share of wood energy consumption (27%) which is mostly driven by the use of traditional appliances using wood logs. In this context, AEBIOM has welcomed the eco-design legislation under which new equipment sold on the market has to comply with minimum efficiency requirements. This is closely followed by the industrial use of wood chips – in installations above 1 Megawatt (22%) – and small scale use of wood chips (14%). Pellet consumption, despite its important growth over the decade represents 6% of total EU wood energy consumption.