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Global Biopower Market – Robust growth to continue

Biopower is one of the major renewable sources of energy. Biopower uses organic matter such as sewage, municipal waste, wood residues, forest residues, fiber, and short-rotation crops and so on to generate electricity. The global biopower market is driven by supportive policies from various governments across the world. Governments worldwide are investing in biopower and related technologies to ensure stability and security of energy supply and to curb carbon emissions. In the wake of growing energy security and environmental concerns, support mechanisms in favor of biopower and related technologies are expected to be strengthened in most of the nations.

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The global biopower cumulative installed capacity increased from 28,996 (MW) in 2001 to 55,734 MW in 2009 at a Compounded Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 8.51%. Germany is the leading biopower market with a share of around 29.12% in 2009, followed by UK and the US. The key driver for the biopower industry is the financial support provided by world governments for converting waste to electricity. Feed in tariff (FIT) system in key markets and the Production Tax Credit (PTC) system in the US together drive the global market for biopower power. During 2009-2015, the biopower cumulative installed capacity is expected to reach 84,898 MW by 2015 from 55,734 MW in 2009 at CAGR of 7.27%.

Ukraine is One of the Major Power Markets in the World

Ukraine is the twelfth largest power market in the world with an installed capacity of 54GW in 2009. Rapid industrialization has led to a tremendous increase in the demand from energy-intensive industries in the region. The installed electricty capacity in Ukraine remained almost constant with a total capacity of 53.9GW in 2001 rising to around 54GW in 2009. Ukraine exports its excess electricity to certain Central and Eastern European countries (CEEP), which include Russia, Slovakia, Romania, Poland, Moldova and Hungary.


Ukraine’s Renewable Energy Sector in Nascent Stage

The growth of renewables in the country is slow due to the lack of proper policy support for renewables and the prevailing political conditions, which make the implementation of renewable projects risky. Hydro is the dominant source of renewable power in the country, accounting for a share of around 98% (made up of 95.62% large and 2.28% small and mini hydro) of the cumulative renewable power generation capacity. Wind, biopower and solar photovoltaic (PV) accounted for 1.93%, 0.11% and 0.07%, respectively, of Ukraine’s total renewable installed capacity in 2009.

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Green Tariff System is the Main Driver for Biopower Market Development in Ukraine

Ukrainian biopower market is driven by the green tariff system and has emerged as being the most effective incentive to promote biopower in the country. The green tariff system was first introduced in September 2008 and amended in April 2009 introduced fixed Feed-In Tariffs (FIT) for electricity from renewable sources for the 20 years. The green tariff also guarantees grid connectivity to the entire renewable power generated from the project. Biomass projects currently attract a tariff of $0.169/kWh (Ukrainian Hrvynia (UAH) 1.3446/kWh). The FIT will provide a level playing field to all players in the industry.

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Rajesh Gunnam