This short briefing for the Global Sustainable Development report 2015 by two researchers at IASS, Potsdam, discusses scientific findings on the sustainability of biomass production and their implications for Sustainability, Development Policy and the SDGs in particular.
The Rio+20 sustainable development conference launched a process to develop a set of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and put the ambitious agreement on the global political agenda to strive for a
development that works for the people and the planet (UN GA 2012).
This brief presents key scientific findings about the sustainability challenges of biomass production and use. On this basis, it argues that issues of natural resource governance deserve greater recognition in the SDG negotiations, as they are at the heart of the joint Rio+20 commitment “to ensure the promotion of an economically, socially and environmentally sustainable future for our planet and for present and future generations” (UN GA 2012, 1).
Land-based biomass, derived from plants, is used for food, feed, fuel, and industrial purposes. Its sustainable production and consumption is the prerequisite to continuously meeting basic human needs while safeguarding the environment. Therefore, the issue of sustainable biomass plays an important role in achieving key objectives of the Post-2015 development agenda, such as food security, energy security, biodiversity, and/or climate stability.