Biodiesel Chief Blasts UN “Expert”

John Davis

While Joe Jobe can be quite the accommodating host when it comes to open houses at his new building, he shows no hospitality to those who try to smear the good name of biofuels, in particular, biodiesel.

This week, Belgian professor and so-called United Nations “expert” Olivier de Schutter tried to blame the rise in food prices on biofuels. But Jobe fought back with the best weapon available: the facts:

While the soaring price of oil is overwhelmingly recognized as the major factor driving food price increases, biofuels such as ethanol and biodiesel have had a marginal effect on the increase in food prices in the U.S. – about four to five percent – according to the U.S. Department of Energy and the USDA.

Contrary to the assertions of those interested in limiting clean alternative fuels such as biodiesel, food prices would actually be higher without biodiesel. The U.S. biodiesel industry used only 12 percent of U.S. soybean production and four percent of global soybean production to produce fuel in 2007. Even then more than 80 percent of each soybean actually entered the market as protein for either human consumption or animal feed. We are proud of the promise that biodiesel holds for providing a sustainable and cleaner alternative to petroleum.

Jobe added that this is just the latest attempt to make biodiesel and ethanol into scapegoats by reciting nothing more than baseless attacks, including a discredited supplemental position paper erroneously reported as a World Bank “study.”