Bioenergy for heat and electricity in the UK , Southampton, UK; Swindon, UK University of Southampton and UK Energy Research Centre 14pp.
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Bioenergy from biomass is the ultimate source of renewable energy and the UK has a considerable biomass resource, estimated at an annual 20 Million tonnes, although only a fraction of this resource is effectively captured for energy, contributing approximately 2. 5 % to heat and electricity supply in the UK. Much combustion technology may be considered as ‘mature’ although bottle necks in the quality and quantity of feedstock are apparent and further fundamental research is required to increase crop yield in a sustainable manner with low chemical in puts ensuring efficient energy balance. In the short term, it might be useful for the UK to focus on developing a limited number of bioenergy chains, linked to CHP-microgeneration and the use of bioenergy for community and public sector projects. This has to be linked to a joined-up policy and regulatory framework. A clear strategy for land management is also required. In the long-term future, considerable excitement exists on the possibility of new bioscience technologies harnessed to improve photosynthetic gains and plant systems biology for bioenergy. The designer energy plant is tractable, with energy streams in future linked to high quality chemical and liquid biofuels outputs as part of the biorefinery.
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