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EU Biofuels Sustainability Schemes expire

Recognition of the first seven Voluntary Sustainability Schemes for verifying compliance with the Renewable Energy Directive had to be renewed by the 9th August this year to avoid expiry.

Three of the Schemes, ISCC, 2BSvs and RSB were re-approved, so their certificate holders can continue selling into the EU RED approved biofuels market.

However, Bonsucro, RTRS, RBSA (Abengoa) and Greenergy Schemes expired on 9th August  and have not yet been re-approved.

See the EU website for up to date details:

https://ec.europa.eu/energy/en/topics/renewable-energy/biofuels/voluntary-schemes

So what action should the certificate holders of the expired Schemes take to ensure that they still have valid sustainability credentials? There has not been any advice provided by the European Commission on the subject. Even if these Schemes are re-approved, what will the gap between re-approval and expiry mean in practice?

The answer will depend on the policy of individual countries. For instance, in the Netherlands, compliance with an approved Voluntary Scheme is mandatory, whereas in the UK, it is not. So, to avoid the risk in markets where certification by an approved Voluntary Sustainability Scheme is mandatory, it would be sensible for certificate holders of an expired Scheme to change to one that has been re-recognised as soon as possible. 

Published: 24 October 16

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