Baringa Partners to lead new project on the future of UK biomass logistics

ETI has chosen energy consultancy Baringa Partners to lead its new bioenergy project, which will examine the future of biomass logistics in the UK.

The six month project will model the logistics requirements of different future bioenergy scenarios, identifying commonalities and differences, key decisions and actions required to support the sector out to 2050. It will will also identify and draw on lessons learned from the development of other relevant commodity sectors.

Baringa Partners will work alongside sustainable energy consultancy Ecofys and supply chain design software company LLamasoft to deliver the project.

The project team will start by reviewing the current status of biomass logistics infrastructure in the UK and how it has developed, while also identifying and drawing on lessons that can be learnt from the development of logistics networks in other relevant sectors such as oil, coal and other commodities. The future bioenergy scenarios will represent a range of future options, to understand the impact that decisions on technology choices and feedstock sources might have on logistics infrastructure development.

Andrew Thomas, ETI’s bioenergy project manager, said: “ETI’s whole energy system analysis shows that bioenergy can play a significant and valuable role in helping the UK meet its 2050 greenhouse gas emission reduction targets cost-effectively, especially when combined with Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS).”

He said the two technologies can deliver net negative emissions of around 55 million tonnes a year, and meet around 10% of UK energy demand by the 2050s, reducing the cost of meeting the UK’s 2050 greenhouse gas emission reduction targets by more than 1% of GDP.

Thomas added: “Delivering the greatest value from bioenergy depends on the UK’s ability to source and distribute sufficient biomass from sustainable sources, either domestic or imported. While UK sourced biomass offers the greatest energy security and sustainability benefits in the longer-term, sustainably sourced biomass imports will continue to be important. To ensure that the UK can develop a bioenergy sector that delivers genuine carbon savings, greater understanding is needed of the logistics requirements for both domestic and imported feedstocks, across different future bioenergy scenarios.”

John Calder from Baringa Partners said: “Logistics is a growing areas of focus across our energy practice as the industry seeks to ensure the supply chain is setup to minimise cost, greenhouse gas emissions and HSE risk and ensure continuity of supply. There are a number of key strategic questions to be addressed around the UK ports, road and rail network, inland and coastal waterways and storage across the supply chain to ensure it is setup to meet the future needs of the Biomass sector.”

The ETI is a public-private partnership between global energy and engineering companies – BP, Caterpillar, EDF, Rolls-Royce and Shell – and the UK government. It aims to accelerate the development of affordable low carbon technologies.

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