A LEAKED European Union document suggesting that the biofuels element of the Renewable Energy Directive be scrapped yesterday produced an angry reaction from the English NFU.
NFU chief combinable crops adviser Guy Gagen described the document as “staggeringly short-sighted”, as well as being based on flawed science.
He said: “Many of the organisations calling for an end to biofuels fail to take into account the huge impact European transportation has on climate change, and the NFU believes that the European Commission must show strong leadership, with a clear focus on the long-term benefits to European fuel security and the environment.
“Incredibly, Oxfam and some green non governmental organisations continue their involvement as interesting bedfellows with Opec, oil and food multinationals and numerous climate change deniers by joining their chorus for an end to biofuel production.”
He added there there were inbuilt contradictions in the attacks on biofuels, none more so than when considering Europe imported around 84 per cent of its crude oil from abroad.
“At a time when fossil fuel costs are high, the cost of increasing our dependency on fuel imports from opec and others by removing biofuel mandates would be both financially and environmentally damaging,” he said.
“Biofuels represent the only realistic means of reducing Europe’s reliance on imported fuel and help address GHG emissions in the transport sector.
“The biofuel industry has been helping address the needs of both food and fuel through long-term market stability, flexibility of cropping patterns and bio-refining to produce quality, high protein animal feed, for which the European Union has a 20million tonne deficit each year.
“The leaked EC proposals, if implemented, could exacerbate the situation of high prices. Removing certainty from the market will send a signal to arable farmers to concentrate on reducing costs as they did in 2007.”
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Weather for Edinburgh
Friday 24 May 2013
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