Biobased experts call current fossil lock irresponsible

januari 25, 2016

Press release by Patricia Osseweijer, Lorentz Center

Climate change and sustainable  development goals will fail without a vibrant Bioeconomy. This is the main conclusion of a group of biobased experts who joined forces in a workshop at the Lorentz Center in Leiden to discuss the future of the biobased economy. The group will deliver an action plan and urge world leaders to untap the full potential of biobased alternatives to fight climate change and help social development. Patricia Osseweijer, professor in Biotechnology and Society at TU Delft, distinguished fellow at the Dutch Royal Academy NIAS Institute and initiator of the experts meeting: “We are locked in a fossil society. It is irresponsible to remain addicted to fossil resources when renewable alternatives can provide so much benefit. We urgently need courageous leadership to make the shift happen.”

The Lorentz BioPanel

The experts established the Lorentz BioPanel to accelerate the move to a sustainable Bioeconomy. Their vision builds on the latest insights amongst others deriving from the COP21 meetings: Humanity needs to work with nature to produce food, fuels and many materials from plants and wastes enabling the move away from a fossil economy. The shift towards such a “bioeconomy” is necessary to achieve key goals related to climate change, social and economic development, sustainable agriculture, clean environments and food security. Realizing these benefits across the developed and developing worlds is made more difficult by volatility in fossil fuel prices. This gives rise to an urgent need for leaders from the public and private sectors as well as civil society to act. The actions necessary to support the bioeconomy entail far smaller costs and risks than inaction.

Lorentz continues to inspire

Hundred years ago Hendrik Lorentz chaired the turning point global meetings in physics and chemistry. This inspired the 28 experts from 4 continents who cover a range of disciplines to be ambitious in their bold actions. The BioPanel is preparing an action plan and will reach out to world leaders as well as young professionals providing tools and insights to inspire them to act. “Inaction is not ethical”.

Click here for more information about the workshop at the Lorentz Center