After hydro and wind, bioenergy is an important renewable energy source in the European electricity mix. Biomass is any organic decomposable matter from plants or animals available on a renewable basis, such as wood, plants, waste, garbage, landfill gases and alcohol fuels. Steam turbines or gasifiers generate electricity from biomass.
The combustion of bioenergy does not contribute to the greenhouse effect in the long run. When biomass fuels are burned, the quantity of carbon dioxide released is the same as the amount the plants or animals consumed during their lifetime.
Bioenergy is the single largest renewable energy source today. It plays a crucial role in developing countries as basic energy for cooking and heating. A total of over 500 TWh of bioenergy electricity was produced in 2016, which is estimated to be over 2.0% of the world’s electricity generation. Bioenergy generation and capacity are expected to scale up significantly. Global bioenergy production surpassed 504 TWh in 2016 and is expected to rise to 560 TWh in 2018, up from 370 TWh in 2012 (IEA).