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Biomass Market to Thrive as Europe Looks for Secure and Eco-Friendly Energy Sources

LONDON – 16 June, 2008 – Biomass will play a significant role in the European energy market in the future. In fact, it is shaping up to have a crucial part in fulfilling the 20 per cent target set for renewables use by 2020. The main driver for the deployment of biomass in Europe is the need to reduce carbon dioxide emissions and ensure a secure energy source. These are some of the findings of a new analysis from Frost & Sullivan (http://www.energy.frost.com) on Strategic Assessment for European Biomass Energy Markets.

Biomass is the largest renewable resource in use and offers cost effective and sustainable opportunities that can meet the rising energy demand in Europe. In fact, it forms almost two-thirds of all renewables in the fasting growing renewable sector, owing to its competitive prices. It also meets requirements of reducing carbon emissions and provides power, heat, fuel as well as alternative feed stocks. It accounts for around 5 per cent of total energy consumption and in countries such as Finland, Sweden and Austria its contribution reaches about 15-20 per cent as biomass is supported with specific policies. It is primarily used for both production of electricity and heat in cogeneration plants and as a fuel in municipal district heating facilities and the utilisation offers a variety of energy services derived from biomass resulting in clean and efficient use of bio energy.

"Soaring oil prices, combined with the lack of secure supplies of oil and natural gas, have heightened the benefit of producing power locally," note Frost & Sullivan analysts who conducted the research. "A balanced energy portfolio with renewable, distributed generation coupled with the benefits of cogeneration is essential for a healthy energy market in Europe. These trends will underline the case for biomass-based energy generation."

However, the high capital costs involved in establishing biomass power plants are a major deterrent to investment. Substantial outlays make project development complex for potential end users, including both small and medium enterprises. This challenge is partly assuaged by incentives in some countries.

"Cost reduction is an important factor of production and transaction expenditures involved during the initial stages that require evaluation and appropriate modifications," explain Frost & Sullivan analysts. "Transaction costs can be reduced, subject to technical and operation solutions, and will ensure higher productivity at more cost-effective rates."

Fuel quality is also a problem with biomass fuels as they are often bulky and have a high moisture content that leads to variable quality. Standardisation techniques for fuel upgrading will ensure fuel quality.

"Moreover, biomass is still referred to as a 'fuel of the past', owing to its historically low efficiency and high emissions," remark researchers. "Proper installation of clean burning combustors that meet modern air emission standards solves concerns related to health problems and levels of particulate emission. Ensuring acceptable cost, quality and adequate supply of biomass fuel will be critical to the successful implementation of bio-energy projects."

If you are interested in a virtual brochure, which provides manufacturers, end users and other industry participants with an overview of a strategic assessment for European biomass energy markets, then send an e-mail to Chiara Carella, Corporate Communications, at chiara.carella@frost.com with your full name, company name, title, telephone number, company e-mail address, company website, city, state and country. Upon receipt of the above information, an overview will be sent to you by e-mail.

Strategic Assessment for European Biomass Energy Markets is part of the Energy & Power Growth Partnership Services Programme, which also includes research in the following markets: North American Biomass for Power Generation Market, North American Biomass and Waste to Energy Markets, European Biomass Power Plant Markets. All research provide detailed market opportunities and industry trends that have been evaluated following extensive interviews with market participants. Interviews with the press are available.

Frost & Sullivan, the Growth Partnership Company, partners with clients to accelerate their growth. The company's TEAM Research, Growth Consulting and Growth Team Membership™ empower clients to create a growth-focused culture that generates, evaluates and implements effective growth strategies. Frost & Sullivan employs over 45 years of experience in partnering with Global 1000 companies, emerging businesses and the investment community from more than 30 offices on six continents. For more information about Frost & Sullivan's Growth Partnerships, visit http://www.frost.com

Strategic Assessment for European Biomass Energy Markets
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Contact:

Chiara Carella
Corporate Communications – Europe
P: +44 (0) 20 7343 8314
E: chiara.carella@frost.com

Johanna Haynes
Corporate Communications – North America
P: 210.247.3870
F: 210.348.1003
E: johanna.haynes@frost.com

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E: patrick.cairns@frost.com

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