January 8 (Renewables Now) - The European Commission approved today a EUR-320-million (USD 366.4m) Portuguese programme to support biomass energy plants in areas with high fire risk.
The new scheme, to be funded via an increase in energy tariffs, will have a 15-year term. It envisages providing a top-up payment over the market price, also known as a feed-in premium, to the selected plants for each unit of electricity produced, and an environmental tariff premium (PDIF) linked to the use of biomass from Portuguese forests in critical areas.
With this approval, the Portuguese government expects that the forest owners will be incentivise to clean their land by using the residues to produce both electricity and heat.
The EC has concluded that this measure meets the requirements of the 2014 Guidelines on State Aid since it will help Portugal increase its renewable electricity share. At the same time, it aligns with the 2014-2020 Agricultural Guidelines.
(EUR 1 = USD 1.14)