The bioeconomy encompasses the production of renewable biological resources and their conversion into food, feed, bio-based products and bio-energy. It includes agriculture, forestry, fisheries, food, pulp and paper production, as well as parts of chemical, biotechnological and energy industries. Its sectors have a strong innovation potential to support Ireland's transition to a more integrated sustainable, low carbon economy.
The Government's Action Plan for Jobs called for an assessment of the potential of Ireland's bioeconomy to further contribute to economic development and the transition to a low-carbon economy.
The National Development Plan - Project Ireland 2040 the Government's €116 billion development plan for the next decade which is underpinned by a 20 year planning framework, highlights the potential of the bioeconomy in promoting the more efficient use of renewable resources while supporting economic development and employment in rural Ireland.
As part of Project 2040 the Government published on 12 March 2018 the first National Policy Statement on the Bioeconomy .
Through this commitment the Government recognises that the bioeconomy is crucial for sustainability while also providing an impetus to rural and regional development and employment.
The Government has mandated an implementation group jointly chaired by the Departments of Agiculture, Food and Marine and Communications, Climate Action and Environment to take forward a number of major actions, in close collaboration with bioeconomy industries and other partners, and report back to Government within a year.
The Bioeconomy Interdepartmental Group held 4 meetings throughout 2018.
First Progress Report to Government
The Bioeconomy Implementation Group's First Progress Report to Government highlights the work undertaken over the last year in addressing the actions and challenges set out in the National Policy Statement on the Bioeconomy.
The report sets out the Groups activities in implementing the framework and developing the bioeconomy pillars over the last 12 months.
The Policy Statement set out the guiding principles behind the bioeconomy in Ireland. Elaborating how the strategic development of the bioeconomy might be advanced through greater policy coherence across all relevant sectors, dealing with fundamental challenges to its commercial success and social development. The Progress Report sets out actions to 2021 building on the work undertaken to date.
For more information:
Teagasc – BioEire Results
EU Commission - Research and Innovation – Bioeconomy
Biobased Industries – Public Private Partnership
Biobased Industries - Consortium
EU Bioeconomy Strategy - Innovating for Sustainable Growth – A Bio-economy for Europe
Science Foundation Ireland – Beacon Bioeconomy Research Centre
Enterprise Ireland – Lisheen Bioeconomy Biorefining Pilot Facility