Many countries in Europe started cofiring biomass with coal in the late 1990s and have accumulated rich experience in setting up supportive policy mechanisms to monitor and control the development of cofiring as well as tackling technical challenges. Asia is rapidly adopting cofiring. Unlike Japan and South Korea, China does not have a supporting mechanism in place yet. However, North America, Brazil and Australia are not active in cofiring due to the lack of governmental support although biomass resources are abundant. This report studies supporting mechanisms for cofiring biomass with coal and reviews cofiring activities which reflect the effects of the policies in Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, Denmark, Germany, Japan, Netherlands, Poland, South Africa, South Korea, Turkey, UK and USA. Although cofiring is a cheap technical route to partially decarbonise the coal fleet, government subsidies are needed to make high ratio cofiring financially viable. Supportive policies, both regulatory and economic, are the vital instruments to biomass cofiring deployment. Cofiring is moving from west to east. Countries with less cofiring experience could learn from Europe. An international cooperation programme would be useful to enable the transfer of the technologies and knowledge sharing.
Support mechanisms for cofiring biomass with coal