On April 1st, Ministerial Order no. 76/2021 was published in the Diário da República (the Official Portuguese Gazette), which establishes the instructional elements for production license and operating license applications for biomass power plants.
The regime for new forest biomass power plants initially approved by Decree-Law nº64/2017, of June 12th regulated their installation and operation, as well as established support and incentive measures to ensure their implementation.
Such Decree-Law was meanwhile amended by Decree-Law nº120/2019, of August 22nd, having the Government sought to establish several objectives, such as: (i) decarbonizing existing thermal consumption, (ii) promoting energy efficiency and (iii) ensuring the supply of forest biomass essentially through local logistical chains for the collection and transport of the raw material, in close connection with the areas identified as having the highest potential fire risk, which will best contribute to the preservation of forest areas, the improvement of their economic sustainability and the prevention of fires.
The Ministerial Order now published, in an attempt to bring the above-mentioned objective legislation into effect, has set out the details of the application for a production license and operating license for forest biomass power plants and defines the bidding procedure to be promoted by Direção-Geral de Energia e Geologia (Portuguese Directorate-General for Energy and Geology) when the set of applications submitted for the installation and operation of biomass power plants exceeds 60 MW, or individually exceeds 10 MW.
Regarding the application for a production license, it is necessary to obtain a Title of Reserve Capacity (TRC), in accordance with the terms established by Decree-Law 172/2006, of 23 August, as amended (i) in production units of energy for sale which are expected to inject into the public service electricity grid more than 1 MW and less than 10 MW; and (ii) in production units of energy for self-consumption when the injection of surpluses into the public service electricity grid exceeding 1 MVA is expected.
Ministerial Order no. 76/20201 may be consulted here.