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Studies shore up proof of indirect biofuels emissions


Tuesday, 12 March 2013

Studies shore up proof of indirect biofuels emissions

Projections that feedstock-based biofuels will indirectly cause net greenhouse gas emissions in the future have been confirmed by preliminary results from two new studies of past land use change.
This may strengthen the case for bringing forward a review into whether indirect land use change (ILUC) - net carbon loss that occurs when forests and grasslands are cleared for food production that has been displaced by biofuels plantations elsewhere- factors should be included in EU legislation.
In October 2012, the European Commission presented a proposal which sets out indirect land-use change (ILUC) factors for different crop groups. These factors represent the estimated land use change emissions that are taking place globally as a result of the crops being used for biofuels in the EU, rather than for food and feed. In March, the Environment Council will discuss biofuels.
The two studies, due to be published in the Spring, were co-authored by the EU's Joint Research Centre (JRC), the Netherlands Environment Assessment Agency (PBL) and Koen Overmars, an independent Dutch consultancy.
“ILUC is a reality,” Luisa Marelli, the JRC’s lead alternative fuels scientist, said- “All of the models and studies now show that there is an ILUC impact and that this is above zero [greenhouse gas emissions].”

Source: Euractiv