In February 2012, the European Commission adopted its first Bioeconomy Strategy “Innovating for sustainable growth – A bioeconomy for Europe” to radically change the EU’s approach in production, consumption, processing, storage, recycling and disposal of biological resources.
At the same time, the Strategy aimed to
- ensure food and nutrition security
- manage our natural resources sustainably
- reduce the dependence on non-renewable, unsustainable resources
- mitigate and adapt to climate change
- and create jobs across Europe.
These objectives remained the guiding principles for further EU bioeconomy action, such as the updated Bioeconomy Strategy in 2018, which expanded the focus areas on the regional deployment of the bioeconomy across Europe and on increasing the understanding of the ecological boundaries.
The Commission’s Knowledge Centre for Bioeconomy and its Bioeconomy Monitoring System play a crucial role in building up the knowledge base on key issues and in tracking the bioeconomy’s progress towards sustainability in the EU and its Member States.
The success of the EU Bioeconomy Strategy has already encouraged ten Member States to develop their own national bioeconomy strategies and seven more Member States are in the process of developing their respective strategies. Substantial investments under the EU Bioeconomy Strategy have further helped to strengthen and scale-up the bio-based sectors, especially through the Bio-based Industries Joint Undertaking and its successor partnership, Circular Biobased Europe.
Yet, additional emphasis on the potential of the bioeconomy to enable the transition towards environmental, economic, and social sustainability is needed.
As next steps, the European Commission will adopt a progress report on the updated EU Bioeconomy Strategy from 2018, to take stock of the achievements and identify the gaps of the EU Bioeconomy actions. The report is expected to be released in Spring 2022.
Source: EU Commission