UK pledges £10 million to EU bioenergy innovation scheme

The UK has pledged up to £10 million to a scheme to develop innovative bioenergy projects, in partnership with seven other European countries.

The ERA-NET Plus BESTF scheme, worth around £35 million, will stimulate up to £80 million of bioenergy innovation projects in the UK, Finland, Sweden, Germany, Spain, Denmark, Switzerland, and Portugal.

The Department of Energy and Climate Change (Decc) will put £6 million into the scheme over the next 2-3 years, with the Technology Strategy Board and the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council together contributing up to a further £4 million.

Energy minister John Hayes said: "Britain has been the global engine room of innovation for centuries. I want to see that rich tradition continue in the energy sector.

"This scheme will help businesses develop a range of different innovative projects by combining public and private sector investment to make the most of this exciting technology."

Organisations will be invited to put forward proposals in early 2013, with grants expected to be made in early 2014.

Author: Paul Newton,

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