This l::: ook comes as part of a new series on Solar Energy R+D, includlng Biomass which is carried out by the Euro: pean Community.. The commission of the European Comrmmities’ Directorate General (XII) for Science, Research and Developnent is currently implementing, on a cost-sharing basis, a solar energy R+D pro;Jranune through contracts with European industry, research institutions and uni versi ties. This prcgrarrrrne includes a very strong acti vi ty on Biomass. Besides general R+D work on all aspects of Biomass growth and utilization which is reported elsewhere in this series, the Canmission is currently starting a new activity on Pilot Plants based on the use of Biomass for energy purp: Jses, and in particular on methanol prcx: luction from wood. The commission considers that the subject of methanol prcxiuction from wood offers llnp: Jrtant prospects for application wi thin the European Canmilllity and in other parts of the world, in particular some of the developing countries & The state of art in Europe In this field is still considered to be very high as a result of related work which was performed in Europe during vorld War II and the time before.