In the Proceedings of the 2nd International Conference on the Economics of Decoupling (ICED) – 2021 published by the Croatian Academy of Sciences and Arts and the Faculty of Economics in Zagreb, the paper “Positioning the Croatian linear bioeconomy towards a circular and sustainable bioeconomy” was published by members of the first interministerial group for bioeconomy under the leadership of Biljana Kulišić, PhD.
Abstract of the paper:
Transition to a sustainable, low-carbon and circular economy is a policy-driven societal change. Bioeconomy, the green part of the circular economy, is setting a new role for the traditional bio-based sectors: agriculture, forestry, fishery and aquaculture in transition from fossil-based to circular and sustainable bio-based economy. Those sectors are to face increased demand for biomass needed for new value chains while keeping the biomass sourcing within ecological boundaries. As such, waste and by-streams of traditional biomass pathways from primary sectors to the industry, as well as post-consumer waste, represent a starting point for transition from linear to circular bioeconomy.
In the EU, this change is facilitated under a complex set of policies gathered under the European Green Deal. Within a 30-year span, it will change the pricing of goods and services at the European market for the carbon footprint dimension.
To formulate a concerted policy for transition to sustainable and circular bioeconomy, this paper investigates political, economic, social, and technological (PEST) factors of the Croatian linear bioeconomy. As a part of the bioeconomy strategy development, the first Croatian Interministerial Committee for Bioeconomy in Croatia (February 2019 – May 2020) performed a PEST analysis, based on the features of the current Croatian linear bioeconomy and the novel policy framework that the European Green Deal brings. The question asked was to position Croatian bioeconomy within the challenges and opportunities that the EU vision for bioeconomy poses.
While Economic and Technological factors of the PEST analysis have scored the highest, a single individual statement within the Political dimension stood out: the lack of coordination among different sectors and the lack of communication between the public and private sector. A horizontal statement, affecting all PEST dimensions of the Croatian bioeconomy, emerged under the Technological heading: “The educational system is not prepared to support the transition to circular and sustainable bioeconomy by educating skilled labour-force with necessary knowledge for novel solutions”. Interestingly, not a single positive statement was generated to recognise opportunities for growth, although quantitative analysis of the existing Croatian linear bioeconomy indicates a great potential for growth in the new setting.
Croatia has a competitive advantage of joining the transition towards sustainable and circular bioeconomy with a large share of linear bioeconomy in its current economy and lower GHG emissions per capita than most of the EU Member States. Yet, the inability to keep up with the dynamics of the EU, or to develop a concerted bioeconomy policy, jeopardises about a quarter of the gross value added in the primary and secondary sector in Croatia. Decarbonisation itself affects about a third of the workforce, 42% of the gross value added and more than a half of the exports.
Biljana Kulisic, Karolina Horvatinčić, Milan Oplanic, Ines Pohajda, Tajana Radić, Željko Šimek, Sanja Tišma, Lana Vukovarac: POSITIONING THE CROATIAN LINEAR BIOECONOMY TOWARDS SUSTAINABLE AND CIRCULAR BIOECONOMY is available now at the Conference proceedings of the 2nd International Conference on the Economics of the Decoupling (ICED), published by the Croatian Academy of Science and Arts and Faculty of Economics & Business – Zagreb: https://iced.net.efzg.hr/iced/conference-proceedings.