A methodology for the assessment of biomass potentials was developed and applied to Central and Eastern European countries (CEEC). Biomass resources considered are agricultural residues, forestry residues, and wood from surplus forest and biomass from energy crops. Only land that is not needed for food and feed production is considered as available for the production of energy crops. Five scenarios were built to depict the influences of different factors on biomass potentials and costs. Scenarios, with a domination of current level of agricultural production or ecological production systems, show the smallest biomass potentials of 2–5.7 EJ for all CEEC. Highest potentials can reach up to 11.7 EJ (85% from energy crops, 12% from residues and 3% from surplus forest wood) when 44 million ha of agricultural land become available for energy crop production. This potential is, however, only realizable under high input production systems and most advanced production technology, best allocation of crop production over all CEEC and by choosing willow as energy crops. The production of lignocellulosic crops, and willow in particular, best combines high biomass production potentials and low biomass production costs. Production costs for willow biomass range from 1.6 to 8.0 €/GJ HHV in the scenario with the highest agricultural productivity and 1.0–4.5 €/GJ HHV in the scenario reflecting the current status of agricultural production. Generally the highest biomass production costs are experienced when ecological agriculture is prevailing and on land with lower quality. In most CEEC, the production potentials are larger than the current energy use in the more favourable scenarios. Bulk of the biomass potential can be produced at costs lower than 2 €/GJ. High potentials combined with the low cost levels gives CEEC major export opportunities
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