Quicknote bioenergy policies
Over the past few years, China has been working on a compre- hensive bioenergy and biofuels policy, with goals and strategies included in the next Five Year Plan (earlier post). In the meantime, separate ministries and agencies are working out more concrete implementation and support steps.
The People's Republic's Ministry of Finance released a series of bioenergy measures, published in a document last Friday. The document only deals with liquid biofuels (biodiesel, ethanol, bio-oil and other liquid biofuels) used for transport. We are awaiting more details, but some elements of the document have been translated:
China will grant subsidies to bioenergy-producing companies when international crude oil prices fall below the green alternative's production cost, but only if the lower price lasts for a long period of time.
The subsidy-guarantee will ensure the sound development of biofuels and attract more investments in the sector.
Through a series of measures, unused land in mountainous areas will be made available and utilized for planting biofuel feedstocks, mainly sweet sorghum, corn and sweet potato.
Technological and research developments that promise to find wide applications in the sector, such as research into cellulosic ethanol or the development of new bioconversion technologies, will also be financially supported by a myriad of fiscal and other measures.
China has set itself the goal of increasing the proportion of renewable energy consumption to ten percent of the country's total energy consumption by 2010, according to the National Development and Reform Commission. As soon as more details of this policy document become available, we will report on them.