One of the first transportation-fuel related climate initiatives was announced during COP22 this week. The Biofuture Platform was launched in COP22 host country Marrakech by co-hosts Brazil and Morocco, and is a coalition formed to accelerate development and scale up deployment of modern sustainable low-carbon alternatives to fossil based solutions in transport fuels, industrial processes, chemicals, plastics and other sectors. There are 20 founding members of which the U.S. is one, with the first interim facilitator from Brazil, the country who originally proposed the initiative.
“Transportation has, so far, been one of the most challenging sectors for mitigation. This is not a matter of selecting between different paths to achieve a certain goal. We need all hands on deck, to explore all avenues towards near and medium term solutions for the transport sector if we are to reach our emissions targets by 2030,” said the Minister of Environment of Brazil, Sarney Filho, who presided the launch event. “In face of the urgency of fighting climate change, countries cannot afford to ignore the largely underestimated potential of bioenergy, especially in face of new technological developments which are opening the door to a whole new low-carbon bioeconomy as an alternative to fossil-based fuels, chemicals and materials,” added Filho.
Several international organizations have come out in support of the initiative including IRENA. “Sustainably-sourced advanced biofuels will be key to expanding the use of renewables in the transport sector. Their high energy density and wide range of feedstock options make them especially vital as a transportation fuel,” said Adnan Z. Amin, director-general of the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA). “As we move to deliver a sustainable energy future and meet climate objectives, initiatives for strengthening international cooperation, such as the Biofuture Platform, can make an important contribution.”
Another program supporter is the FAO – The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations. “Particularly regarding biofuels, FAO and its partners work to support countries to move from the dualism of ‘food versus fuel’ to the inclusive concept of ‘food and fuel’,”said the Director General of the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), José Graziano da Silva. “In this line, FAO welcomes the Biofuture Platform which aims to promote low-carbon solutions and contribute to the global efforts against the impacts of climate change.”
According to the Launch Statement: The Biofuture Platform shall also involve the private sector and other stakeholders and initiatives in a flexible operating model, and address the specific challenges ahead of scaling up a sustainable bioeconomy by promoting international collaboration in policy dialogue; research and development; and by facilitating an enabling environment for advanced low-carbon fuel and bioeconomy-related investments.
Founding Biofuture Platform countries include: Argentina, Brazil, Canada, China, Denmark, Egypt, Finland, France, India, Indonesia, Italy, Netherlands, Morocco, Mozambique, Paraguay, Philippines, Sweden, United Kingdom, United States of America and Uruguay. Click here to learn more about the Biofuture Platform.