In August 2017, SBP submitted its certification system to the Dutch regulator for benchmarking against the requirements of the Dutch SDE+ subsidy scheme. ADBE, the Commission responsible for carrying out the benchmarking, has concluded their preliminary assessment. The assessment, whilst positive, identified several areas that would need to be addressed should SBP wish to achieve full compliance with the requirements of SDE+.
The assessment procedure was developed on the assumption that certification schemes would not be modified as a result of the findings. However, having received the preliminary assessment and considered its findings, SBP has taken the decision to modify its certification system to incorporate certain specific requirements of SDE+.
The nature of the assessment procedure means that SBP must first withdraw its current application and then make a new submission, which incorporates the necessary modifications. The new submission will focus on biomass produced from secondary feedstock only, with the aim of enabling the Dutch market to be supplied with biomass carrying an SBP claim. The modifications are not expected to have any material impact on companies in the supply chain.
In parallel, SBP will determine the market demand for biomass produced from primary feedstock, and should there be sufficient demand SBP will consider further modifications to meet the SDE+ requirements specific to primary feedstock.
The Dutch regulator has confirmed that, for the interim period, which is expected to run until the end of 2018, the SBP Chain of Custody system in combination with FSC and PEFC endorsed Forest Management claims, can be used to demonstrate compliance with the Dutch sustainability requirements.