It is a great honor for me to invite you to the European Biomass Conference and Exhibition, which will take place in the wonderful city of Milan. Here in the capital of Lombardy which is the heart of Italy’s bioenergy industry, is the right place to celebrate the 20th anniversary of this outstanding conference. Having for the 20th time an event, which brings together the stakeholder of the biomass community, is certainly a point to have a look back as well as to think about the future of this strongly developing industry sector.
Now, one year after the disaster in Fukushima and in the time of dramatically rising prices for fossil recourses there should be no doubt about the necessity of renewables in any form. Nevertheless we have to take note of a growing opposition against this promising technology, especially in the biomass sector.
Is it really sustainable what we are doing? How much biomass can we afford? What are the right applications for biomass? These are examples for the questions which have to be answered, having in mind, that without biomass, neither future energy supply nor many material application of our modern society will be possible. Thus the World Forum on ‘Fuel, Food and the Environment: The Bioenergy Challenge’ will be one of the highlights of the 2012 Conference Opening.
Since this conference, as an annual event, constitutes one of the world’s leading science-to-science, business-to-business and science-to-industry forum for the biomass sector it will cover the whole spectrum of the community’s interests. The horizontal and vertical oriented sessions end events range from giving an worldwide overview on the whole scene, over answering specific questions for dedicated technologies in vertical events like: “Biogas Upgrading and Grid Injection”, “Biogas goes Europe”, “Biowaste to Energy” and “Bioenergy and Smart Grids”, up to defining the pathways for the future. All this is condensed in the motto for the conference of this year:
“Setting the course for a biobased economy”.
So, together with the organizers I look forward to welcoming you to the 20th European Biomass Conference & Exhibition from 18th – 22nd June 2012 in Milan. Let us face the challenge and confront together one of the greatest tasks of our century: the transformation towards sustainability. Let us together set the course for a biobased economy!
Dr.-Ing. B. Krautkremer
Fraunhofer Institute IWES
Head of Bioenergy System Technology