Biofuels Disaster to Make the Planet Boil02/04/2008 13:19:31
February 2008. Full page adverts, run by the RSPB in The Times and Guardian have spelled out to the government just how destructive the world’s biofuels’ policies have become.
They warn of the loss of wildlife habitats to produce fuels whose manufacture may be hastening climate change. They urge the government to shelve legislation forcing oil companies to sell more biofuel, until there is proof that this new fuel is truly green.
Major Habitat Loss
UK Legislation to Make Things Worse
Yet UK legislation is about to make things worse. And Europe’s energy ministers will this week consider doubling the amount of biofuel sold across the EU.
Under the UK’s Renewable Transport Fuel Obligation (RTFO), biofuels must make up at least 2.5 per cent of transport fuel from April 2008. By 2010, this must rise to 5 per cent costing taxpayers up to £500 million in subsidies.
But strict rules on how and where this biofuel is produced will not be in place for three years. And there will be no proof that biofuels emit fewer greenhouse gases than their fossil fuel equivalents until 2010. The production of some biofuels already emits more.
The RSPB wants the RTFO postponed until these crucial checks are in place.
Graham Wynne, Chief Executive of the RSPB, said: ‘The government is forcing oil companies to sell fuels that could be making climate change worse and making us buy fuel that could be responsible for the loss of wildlife across the world.
‘This legislation should be delayed until it includes greenhouse gas measures that show the emissions savings of every biofuel are at least 60 per cent above their fossil fuel equivalent. That is what the government must do if it is serious about tackling climate change.’