Call for participation in Better Biomass scheme revision as part of sustainability framework for biobased raw materials


Better Biomass is the certification scheme that can be used to demonstrate the sustainability of biobased raw materials for energy applications and biobased products. Better Biomass can also be used to demonstrate compliance with legal requirements in the framework of Directive (EU) 2018/2001 (RED II) and the Dutch regulation concerning conformity assessment of solid biomass for energy applications. The Better Biomass scheme documents will be revised. The several interpretations will be integrated in NTA 8080 and NCS 8080 to improve user-friendliness. Also the (non-legal) sustainability requirements will be reviewed in view of the sustainability framework for biobased raw materials.

Better Biomass (NTA 8080) certification is possible since 2009. Many changes have occurred since the launch en the scheme documents have been continuously updated to ensure legal compliance and to respond to new insights about what is considered sustainably produced biobased raw materials. The current editions of NTA 8080-1 with sustainability requirements and NTA 8080-2 with chain-of-custody requirements were published in December 2015. The document containing the rules for certification, NCS 8080, was published in Augustus 2018. By using interpretations that are established in the Interpretation Document it is ensured that the Better Biomass scheme remains up to date. The Interpretation Document has become a bulky document. With revising NTA 8080-1:2015, NTA 8080-2:2015 and NCS 8080:2018-08, it is intended to start with an empty Interpretation Document.

Sustainability framework biobased raw materials

The use of biobased raw materials for energy applications is heavily debated. Better Biomass is already applicable for biobased products and include a reporting requirement about the raw material efficiency. In the recently presented ‘Fit for 55’ climate package by the European Commission, the role of biobased raw materials is acknowledged. Strict sustainability requirements are proposed when (woody) biomass is utilized for bioenergy. In addition, high-end valorisation (cascading) of biobased raw materials is promoted. Also in the Netherlands, the government is developing a sustainability framework for biobased raw materials taking into account the recommendations of the SER advisory report ‘Biomass in the balance: A sustainability framework for high-value use of bio-based raw materials’. The Better Biomass scheme revision also intends to provide concrete building blocks to support such a sustainability framework.

Participation in revision

Interested parties can express their interest to take part in the revision by sending an e-mail to Participation is free of charge. The working group will develop first the English version of the documents, which will be translated to Dutch after final text has been agreed. The (online) kick-off meeting is anticipated in September 2021.

For more information, contact Jarno Dakhorst, Better Biomass scheme manager, by e-mail or telephone +31 15 2 690 326.