The IEEP is an independent research organization that deals mostly with government policies that affect the environment in Europe. The institute focuses on disseminating knowledge and ensuring that policy within the governments of Europe focuses on environmental concerns of the continent. The IEEP works on both short-term and long-term policy studies. There are nine research areas within the IEEP as follows:
- Agriculture & Land Management
- Climate Change & Energy
- Environmental Economics
- Global Issues & External Action
- Industrial Pollution
- Resource Use, Waste, Chemicals
- Water, Marine & Fisheries
With so much focus on biofuels, the IEEP division of Climate Change & Energy has focused a great deal of resources on the topic of bioenergy. The IEEP is highly invested in understanding the impact of bioenergy on the climate, particularly the issue of “carbon debts” that arise from deforestation. The organization has found that most bioenergy projects suffer from what it terms “accounting errors.” These errors revolve around the production and absorption of carbon dioxide. The report finds that many bioenergy projects are misleadingly termed “carbon neutral” because they fail to take into account land use changes and carbon debts.
The IEEP further finds that target reductions in emissions cannot be met with biofuels. With the research from IEEP and other institutions, the impact of indirect land use changes caused by biofuels has been considered in revisions to European COmission Policies regarding biofuel feedstock. The result is that the use of biofuels for energy production will be limited to 5%, with intensive study of the net impact on food prices and GHG emissions.