Government committee claims biofuel is damaging to the environment
21 January 2008

British MPs have told the European Union to abandon new biofuel targets because they may do more harm to the environment than good. The Environmental Audit Committee claims that biofuels are an ineffective way of cutting greenhouse gasses and are too expensive to produce. In a damning report, the committee adds that there are cheaper, more effective methods of cutting CO2 emissions from cars. Committee members say the UK government and the EU have been ‘misguided’ on the benefits of using biofuel for road transport, and that current technology would makes it more efficient to use the new fuel for heating. The report comes in the same week the EU launched its new climate change strategy - with a target of getting 10 percent of cars running on biofuel by 2020. The EU directive also mandates as to where and how the raw materials that create biofuels should be grown. It’s a move designed to appease critics who, among other concerns, believe that widespread use of biofuels will disrupt the food chain and lead to mass areas of forest being felled. Other environmental groups including the RSPB have lent their support to the critical report. It will concern brands like Saab and Vauxhall, whose environmental strategy is focussed on BioPower technology and the widespread use of biofuel. Many manufacturers are lobbying the EU for alternative fuels to be made more widely available at filling stations.

Will Powell

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