In the July 2005 Gleneagles Plan of Action, the G8 +5 (Brazil, China, India, Mexico and South Africa)  agreed to "... promote the continued development and commercialisation of renewable energy by: [...] d) launching a Global Bioenergy Partnership to support wider, cost effective, biomass and biofuels deployment, particularly in developing countries where biomass use is prevalent".

Following a consultation process among the developing and developed countries, international agencies and the private sector, a White Paper  was prepared to guide Partnership activities. The Global Bioenergy Partnership (GBEP) was launched during the Ministerial Segment of the 14th session of the Commission on Sustainable Development (CSD14) in New York on 11 May 2006, with a signing ceremony of the Terms of Reference.

Italy and Brazil have been elected Chair and Co-Chair respectively for the following biennium:
Chair: Francesco La Camera, Director General, Ministry for the Environment Land and Sea, Italy;
Co-Chair: Reinaldo Salgado, Director General, Ministry of External Relations, Brazil.

On 18 January 2007, GBEP was registered as a CSD Partnership.

In 2007 it was given a renewed mandate by the G8 Heiligendamm Summit to "continue its work on biofuel best practices and take forward the successful and sustainable development of bioenergy" (G8 Summit Declaration - Heiligendamm, 7 June 2007).

In 2008, the G8 Hokkaido Toyako Summit invited GBEP to "work with other relevant stakeholders to develop science-based benchmarks and indicators for biofuel production and use". (G8 Summit Declaration - Hokkaido Toyako, 8 July 2008)

In 2009, GBEP received a new mandate by the G8 Summit of L’Aquila: “We welcome the work of the Global Bioenergy Partnership (GBEP) in developing a common methodological framework to measure greenhouse gas emissions from biofuels and invite GBEP to accelerate its work in developing science-based benchmarks and indicators for sustainable biofuel production and to boost technological cooperation and innovation in bioenergy”. (G8 Summit Declaration – L’Aquila, 8 July 2009)

In 2010, the G8 Muskoka Summit welcomed "the work of the Global Bioenergy Partnership (GBEP)" and committed "to facilitating swift adoption of voluntary sustainability criteria and indicators, as well as on capacity building activities". (G8 Summit Declaration - Muskoka, 25-26 June 2010)

In 2011 the G8 Deauville Summit declared to "keep on supporting international initiatives launched by the G8, notably the [...] the Global Bioenergy Partnership (GBEP), [...]." (G8 Summit Declaration - Deauville, 26-27 May 2011)

In 2012, the G8 Camp David Summit declared to "Applaud the Global Bioenergy Partnership (GBEP) for finalizing a set of sustainability indicators for the production and use of modern bioenergy and for initiating capacity building activities through a Regional Forum in West Africa. Invite GBEP to continue implementing capacity building activities that promote modern bioenergy for sustainable development." (G8 Summit Declaration - Camp David, 19-21 May 2012)

In 2013, the G20 St. Petersburg Summit declared to "[...] recognise the importance of the sustainable and responsible production and use of modern bioenergy and the role played by the Global Bioenergy Partnership (GBEP) in this regard." (G20 Summit Declaration - St.Petersburg, 5-6 September 2013)

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