From waste to energy: Turkey looks to biomass to achieve ‘green growth’
Currently, Turkey relies heavily on imported fossil fuels to meet its domestic energy demand. But by embracing the massive growth of its renewable energy market – including biomass and circular waste-free approaches – Turkey can achieve its long-term sustainability and energy security goals.
Creating a market for bioMASS and industrial energy efficiency
Turkey’s untapped biomass sector presents huge opportunities to generate heat and electricity from agricultural waste. Although these opportunities appear attractive, there remains a lot of uncertainty in terms of costs, supply and aggregation, technology and scale.
UNIDO’s ongoing project in cooperation with TAGEM (Republic of Turkey Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry General Directorate of Agricultural Research and Policies) aims to demonstrate and repurpose agricultural residues in the production of energy. Turkish farmers typically burn these residues which emit harmful pollutants into the atmosphere. But by fostering and promoting an environmentally sound bioenergy industry, Turkey can decrease its dependence on imported coal, oil and natural gas, and also mitigate harmful greenhouse gas emissions.
ADVOCACY and POLICY SUPPORT
Turkey’s national energy strategy aims to make the country’s energy supply more secure through diversification. The generation of more energy resources that are domestically sourced and also renewable is essential to achieving this goal. UNIDO is working with the Government to strengthen existing incentives which are designed to accelerate the use of biomass as an energy resource. This includes advice and support for the development of sustainable production, conversion and efficient utilization of bioenergy inline with the country’s Renewable Energy Action Plan of Turkey.
In addition to showcasing modern bioenergy technologies, UNIDO is working to simultaneously promote the benefits of industrial energy efficiency through awareness raising and the demonstration of various energy efficiency technology applications in selected Small and Medium Enterprise (SME) sub-sectors. Particular focus will be given to the potential of circular economy models such as waste heat recovery in Turkish industrial plants. Through regular training initiatives and workshops the project expects to deliver a critical mass of energy efficiency capacity and biomass knowhow for both industry stakeholders and policymakers.
The project also emphasizes gender balance in each step of energy generation, and displays gender equality planning for all its awareness raising & training organizations.
FINANCING FOR EFFICIENCY
Although a number of renewable energy applications using organic waste have successfully obtained investment, Turkish investors are typically reluctant to finance biomass and/or industrial energy efficiency initiatives due to perceived risks. To overcome this, UNIDO is trialling and encouraging a number of financing mechanisms. This includes a dedicated credit support for selected projects sponsors wanting to experiment with the ESCO (energy service company) model. Additional measures, such as investment grants and tax breaks are also under consideration.
4.2 Million metric tons of CO2
11 Bioenergy investments
500 Engineers, technicians, government and financial stakeholders