Susanne Kendell
Institute of Market Analysis


Bundesallee 63
38116 Braunschweig
Phone: +49 531 596 5302
Fax: +49 531 596 5399

Elements and milstones for a sustainable bio-energy strategy


 (c) Simon Bonse

How does the German demand for bioenergy affect global markets, land use, environment and food security? International trade gives insights.

Background and Objective

The development of the German bioenergy sector bears multiple challenges: How can limited resources (for example land) be used most sustainably?  How can resource saving and cost efficient technologies be promoted? What general conditions can we implement in the new markets to produce and use energy sustainably?

Our project ‘Milestones 2030’aims at deriving elements and milestones for a sustainable, medium- to long-term bioenergy strategy based on reliable data and model projections.


In this joint research project, we develop and compare four extreme scenarios. All scenarios have in common that a high demand for bioenergy is modeled in Germany. They differ in the form of bioenergy (fuel vs. electricity and heat) and sustainability standards (business as usual vs. high sustainability). In a modeling network, we determine different technologies and their resource and land demand. Based on this, we evaluate their impact on sustainability, environment, regions and food security. These analyses lead to recommendations for politicians, economic agents and scientists.   

We, as the Thünen Institute, use the computable general equilibrium model MAGNET to project the German demand for biomass to produce bioenergy in an international context. Therefore, MAGNET is linked with two other models, namely a bio-physical land use model and a technology model for the bioenergy sector. Results of MAGNET are the global agricultural production, the additional demand of biomass for energy and the trade patterns.

Our Research Questions

How does an increased demand of biomass for energy purposes affect domestic and international markets?

How much biomass will be produced and where does it come from?

What are the resulting trade and market effects and how does global land use change?


Final report and presentations

Links and Downloads

Official homepage (German only)



Involved Thünen-Partners

Involved external Thünen-Partners


1.2012 - 12.2014

Sponsored by


hits: 3

  1. Thrän D, Arendt O, Banse M, Braun J, Fritsche U, Gärtner S, Hennenberg KJ, Hünneke K, Millinger M, Poinitka J, Rettenmaier N, Schaldach R, Schüngel J, Wern B, Wolf V (2017) Strategy elements for a sustainable bioenergy policy based on scenarios and systems modeling: Germany as example. Chem Eng Technol 40(2):211-226, DOI:10.1002/ceat.201600259
    pdf document (limited accessibility) 962 kb
  2. Thrän D, Schaldach R, Millinger M, Wolf V, Arendt O, Poinitka J, Gärtner S, Rettenmaier N, Hennenberg KJ, Schüngel J (2016) The MILESTONES modeling framework: An integrated analysis of national bioenergy strategies and their global environmental impacts. Environ Modelling Software 86:14-29, DOI:10.1016/j.envsoft.2016.09.005
    pdf document (limited accessibility) 842 kb
  3. Thrän D, Pfeiffer EM, Arendt O, Poinitka J, Braun J, Millinger M, Wolf V, Banse M, Schaldach R, Schüngel J, Gärtner S, Rettenmaier N, Hünecke K, Hennenberg KJ, Wern B, Baur F, Fritsche U, Gress HW (2015) Meilensteine 2030 : Elemente und Meilensteine für die Entwicklung einer tragfähigen und nachhaltigen Bioenergiestrategie ; Endbericht zu FKZ03KB065, FKZ 03MAP230. Berlin: Bundesministerium für Umwelt, Naturschutz, Bau und Reaktorsicherheit (BMUB), SchrR Förderprogr Energ Biomassenutzung 18