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Bioeconomy Factsheet - Ireland

Category: feedstocks,bioenergy,biobased,biorefining,biofuels,nnfcc
Published: 26/06/2015
Author: Dr C. Burns, NNFCC, UK; and Dr. A. V. Piterina, Technology Centre for Biorefinery and Bioenergy, Ireland.
This factsheet is part of our series of guides outlining "Need to Know" information about the bioeconomy in Europe.

BioBase NWE

The factsheet was produced through the Interreg IVB NWE Bio Base NWE project. The Bio Base NWE partnership consists of seven European organisations, Bio Base Europe Pilot Plant, Belgium; Bio Base Europe Training Centre, The Netherlands; NNFCC, UK; Technology Centre for Biorefining and Bioenergy (TCBB), Republic of Ireland, CLIB2021, Germany; REWIN, The Netherlands and Gent Bioeconomy Valley, Belgium. 

The Bio Base NWE project has now come to an end. However, BioBase4SME is a new 3-year project launched in 2016, as a continuation of BioBaseNWE with additional support services for SMEs.

Factsheet overview​

This factsheet gives an overview of Ireland's bioeconomy innovation technology system. It includes the key government interventions, research initiatives, networks and finance instruments, in Ireland.

Bioeconomy Governance

The main governing bodies are:

  • Department of Communications, Energy and Natural Resources
  • Department of Agriculture, Food, and the Marine
  • Department of Jobs, Enterprise, and Innovation
  • Department of the Environment, Community, and Local Government

Bioeconomy Strategies

While there is no overarching bioeconomy strategy, there is a commitment to develop one. The Irish Government-funded Bio-Éire project team are identifying priority opportunities for Ireland’s bioeconomy. The following documents show current policies:

  • Building Ireland’s Smart Economy - a framework for Sustainable Economic Renewal (2008), to move away from fossil energy, through investment in renewable energy, green enterprise, and agri-food.
  • Developing the Green Economy in Ireland (2009) - an action plan prepared by a High-Level Action Group on Green Enterprise, set up by the Government.
  • Delivering our Green Potential – Government Policy Statement on Growth and Employment in the Green Economy 2012, reaffirms the Irish Government’s commitment to further developing the green economy
  • The Government’s Action Plan for Jobs also reflects its green economy commitments.
    Towards 2030 - Teagasc’s Role in Transforming Ireland’s Agri-Food Sector and the Wider Bio-economy (2008), covers food and energy.
  • The Programme for Government 2011-2016 commits to a coherent waste management approach that recovers more waste away from landfill, for energy, biobased materials, and chemicals.
  • Also, A Resource Opportunity – Waste Management Policy in Ireland (2012) is a roadmap for how Ireland will move away from landfill and recover more resources - Ireland’s three regional waste management plans also support development of a biobased economy.

More information 

For more information about the Irish bioeconomy, please download the factsheet, or contact Dr Caitlin Burns, NNFCC.

Bioeconomy Factsheet Series

This factsheet series provides a concise summary of how different EU governments are supporting the growth of the bioeconomy through policy, strategy and research.​ Other Factsheets in this series include: