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28 May 2022

Biofuel certification under the ISCC EU scheme

Author: Angelika Babiarz, Trainee-attorney-at-law at Polowiec & Wspólnicy

On 13.04.2022, Commission Implementing Decision 2022/602 (EU) came into force, approving the ISCC EU scheme. This means that in the meaning of the Act on Biocomponents and Liquid Biofuels, the ISCC EU is a recognized certification scheme that guarantees that biocomponents used in liquid fuel production conform to sustainability criteria. This is particularly important information for those implementing the National Indicative Target (NCW), i.e. those engaged in producing, import, or intra-community acquisition of liquid fuels or biofuels. 

An element vital for an entity implementing the NCW to count biocomponents towards the minimum required biocomponent share in liquid fuels is demonstrating that they meet sustainability criteria, i.e. reduction of greenhouse gas emissions and protection of areas of high biodiversity, carbon-rich areas, and wetlands. Therefore an entity implementing the NCW is required to obtain a document confirming that biocomponents that are traded or used to produce fuels conform to requirements under the Act on Biocomponents and Liquid Biofuels and the acts issued to implement it. These documents are mainly certifications and certificates.

The ISCC EU scheme has been included among the recognized certification systems that specify the procedure for verifying compliance with sustainability criteria based on the mass balance system, in addition for example to REDcert or the KZR INiG system (a full list is provided on the EC website at: https://energy.ec.europa.eu/topics/renewable-energy/bioenergy/voluntary-schemes_en) . Under the Act on Biocomponents, certified entities are required to introduce a mass balance system whereby biomass/biocomponent consignments of varying sustainability characteristics can be mixed, and sustainability characteristics and particular biomass/biocomponent consignment quantities can be determined, to ensure that the sum of all of the biomass/biocomponent consignments withdrawn from the mixture has the same sustainability characteristics and is equal to the sum of all biomass/biocomponent consignments added to the mixture.

Therefore as of 13.04.2022 it will be possible under the law to apply the ISCC EU scheme in Poland, as under the Act on Biocomponents and Liquid Biofuels, and EU regulations as well, a particular scheme is permitted based on EC approval.