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EU should base its biofuels policy on facts rather than emotions

WBA opposes the European Union (EU) proposal to phase out conventional biofuels support post-2020, policy decisions based on emotions and myths are dangerous

The World Bioenergy Association (WBA) opposes the European Union (EU) proposal to phase out support for conventional biofuels post-2020. In a statement the WBA also declared its support for European farmers and biofuels organisations, COPA-COGECA and ePURE in their opinions against the EU proposal. According to the WBA policy decisions based on “emotions and myths” are dangerous and the recent European Commission (EC) proposal will have a negative impact on farmers, businesses and companies in the biofuels sector. Furthermore it will increase dependency on imports and make it increasing difficult for the EU to uphold its leadership ambition in the climate change arena.

Instead, the WBA calls for a more holistic approach to conventional biofuels. In 2015, global production of conventional biofuels increased to 98.3 billion litres. The EU produced 11.5 billion litres, which had a significant impact in decarbonizing the transport sector and for countries like Sweden to achieve their 2020 renewable energy targets well in advance. At the same time, production of conventional biofuels also produces protein – a major feedstock for the food and feed industry. In 2013, 71 million tonnes of protein were produced globally in the form of Distiller’s Dried Grains with Solubles (DDGS) from conventional ethanol and biodiesel production. Restricting biofuels production will increase EU dependency on imports.

– It is unfortunate that EU is so biased against conventional biofuels. Decarbonizing the transport sector is a huge challenge and sustainable biofuels, both conventional and advanced biofuels, should be encouraged. The policy should be based on emission reduction, economics and efficiency of the process rather than emotions, said Remigijus Lapinskas, President, WBA.

5529/AS

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