Monitoring sectoral effects and sustainability of German Bioeconomy : [paper for] XV World Forestry Congress, Coex, Soul, Republic of Korea, 2-6 May 2022

Substitution of fossil resources by renewables represents the core of the so-called bioeconomy and, as such, is a key factor of sustainable economic development. In Germany, wood is the most important renewable and sustainably produced resource for material uses. Traditional wood uses are manifested in harmonized economic activities like production of paper, furniture and other. At the same time, new uses of wood are established in markets and economies. How does this development affect economic sectors? How much wood-based employment, value added and turnover is created in this process and what share of the total economy is affected? In order to answer these questions and to steer bioeconomy development, production, processing, and use of wood and other biomasses need careful monitoring.
Our design for monitoring resource base and sustainability of German bioeconomy approaches these issues in two complementary ways: on a sectoral and a material flow-based level. Our sectoral approach covers the wider context of economic activities. Its quantification allows for accounting significance and development of bioeconomy in national context and international comparisons. Sectoral bioeconomy monitoring uses existing official classification schemes and statistics to provide data on socio-economic development. Some of the economic activities included in bioeconomy are partly bio-based. For those, bio-based shares are calculated based on the amount of the respective inputs of bio-based material.
The bio-based shares are used for calculating bio-based employment, turnover and value added as well as other indicators quantifying sustainability effects of the bioeconomy. In order to give an idea on some of bioeconomy’s sustainability effects on a national scale, 10 indicators have been quantified and put into perspective with the total figures for Germany. The indicators origin from the German Sustainable Development Strategy and address German contribution to achieve the SDGs.



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