Newly published energy statistics for 2009 show that bioenergy today makes up a larger share of Sweden’s energy use than oil: 31.7 percent bioenergy compared to 30.8 oil.
The numbers are based on preliminary statistics from the Swedish Energy Agency and were presented by Svebio – the Swedish Bioenergy Association. The final energy use includes all sectors of the Swedish society: industry, transport, residential, services, etc.
Svebios analyses also shows that the total share of renewable energy, using the definition in EU:s renewable energy directive (RED), was 46.3 percent in 2009. This is well ahead of the EU target trajectory, and only 3.7 percent short of the EU target for Sweden of 49 percent in 2020. The major renewable energy source beside bioenergy is hydropower. Wind power is still a relatively small contributor to the energy supply.
The main reason for the fast increase of renewable energy in recent years is the steady growth of bioenergy use. Biomass is the primary energy source in the district heating sector, which supplies more than half of the total heat demand in the residential sector. The use of by-products and residues in the forest industry is another major component. Bioelectricity has expanded both with combined heat and power plants in district heating and in the forest industry. Pellets and fuelwood play a major role in heating of single homes. Finally, more than 5 percent of transport fuels are biofuels – ethanol, biodiesel and biogas. In all, the Swedish bioenergy business sector is in a phase of strong expansion, which is confirmed by the statistics.
These numbers confirm that Sweden is a world leader in the field of bioenergy. Biomass is used for heat and electricity, for biofuels for transport, and as energy source in industry. Almost all Swedish cities and towns have district heating using biomass as fuel. All of these applications can be seen on study tours and excursions at World Bioenergy 2010 at the end of this month.