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The use of renewable fuels in energy generation is an EU policy and there is an EU wide mandatory target of 20% of all energy being generated from renewables by 2020. Biomass is seen as a key contributor to meeting these aims and is a generic term for any organic material that can be used to produce heat, electricity or transport fuel.

UK Government has set out policies to support the use of biomass in energy generation in its UK Biomass Strategy published in 2012. The Government has also consulted on proposed improvements to the biomass sustainability criteria used to determine support for biomass through the Renewables Obligation. Background information on bioenergy and sustainability can be found in the July 2012 POST Note Bioenergy.

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