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Thursday, 24 June 2010

Biofuels cannot come from ripped-up rainforest, says Brussels

A long-awaited European Commission communication outlining guidelines on what constitutes genuinely sustainable biofuels has already run into strong criticism.  Environmentalists and development groups say the rules overlook the key aspect of the controversial energy source that turns what was once thought of as a green alternative into a net producer of greenhouse gas emissions.  On 10th June, the commission is to unveil guidelines aiming to clarify rules contained in a 2008 law on biofuels, aiming to counter a massive backlash against the fuels.  Two years ago, a cavalcade of expert reports revealed that many forms of the fuel source both increase greenhouse gas emissions and put pressure on food prices. The new guidelines however now underscore that ripping up rainforests or draining bogs to grow the plants that produce the fuel defeat the purpose of a green energy source, as the emissions released when forests or peatlands are transformed can actually put more CO2 into the atmosphere.

Source: euobserver.com