Report: EU biofuel consumption increased in 2012

By Erin Voegele | July 30, 2013

EurObserv’ER has released its annual Biofuels Barometer, reporting increased biofuel consumption within the European Union last year. Between 2011 and 2012, consumption grew by 2.9 percent, to nearly 14.4 million metric tons of oil equivalent (Toe). According to the report, biofuels accounted for approximately 4.7 percent of transportation fuel within the E.U last year.  

While overall consumption in the EU increased in 2012, growth among countries was not even. Consumption increased in 14 countries, decreased in 10 and was either not incorporated or reported by the remaining three EU member countries. In countries where decreases were experienced, the report points to eth economic crisis and uncertainties surrounding forthcoming European legislation as possible causes.

In 2012, ethanol accounted for only 19.9 percent of the biofuel consumed in Europe, with biodiesel accounting for most of the balance. Vegetable oil and biogas accounted for a combined 1 percent of total consumption.

Germany led in ethanol consumption, with 805,460 Toe consumed. France, the U.K., Spain and Sweden rounded out the top-five consuming nations, with relative consumption levels of 471,600 Toe, 388,722 Toe, 208,675 Toe and 207,564 Toe in 2012.

France produced the most ethanol in Europe in 2012, with 1.2 billion liters (317 million gallons) of production, up from 1.007 billion liters the prior year. Germany produced 773 million liters of ethanol in 212, up slightly from the 770 million liters produced in 2011. Belgium and the Netherlands each produced 450 million liters last year, with Spain producing 230 million liters. Production either increased or remained the same in all countries other than Romania and the U.K. from 2011 to 2012.

According to the report, Abengoa Bioenergy had the most production capacity in Europe last year, featuring six plants with a combined capacity of 1.281 billion liters. Tereos also owns six plants, with a combined capacity of 883 million liters. CropEnergies/BioWanze, Cristanol, Ensus, Agrana, Verbio and Agroetanol were also listed as major European ethanol producers in 2012.  

A full copy of the report is available here