Europe Votes to Limit Crop-based Biofuels

John Davis

eu-flagBiofuel makers in Europe could be facing a real uphill battle, as the European Parliament votes to limit the amount of green fuels made from crops in transportation. Bloomberg reports the 6 percent limit on the use of crop-based biofuels comes from concerns about indirect land use change.

The vote … in Strasbourg, France, sets the stage for talks among EU governments on the issue. Any differences with the Parliament would have to be ironed out in negotiations that could add months to the process for reaching a final accord.

The EU wants to prevent a requirement that at least 10 percent of energy for road and rail transport in 2020 come from renewable sources from causing side-effects that undermine the battle against global warming.

Made primarily from crops such as rapeseed, wheat, corn and sugar, biofuels including ethanol and biodiesel are the main renewable energy for transport and offer the prospect of reducing the use of fossil fuels blamed for climate change.

The vote actually upped the previous cap of 5 percent on crop-based fuels. The European Parliament hopes that continuing to place limits on crop-based biofuels will encourage more second generation biofuels made from non-food sources. Those non-food sources are going to have to do it, because by 2020, the EU is supposed to have at least 10 percent of land-transport energy come from some type of non-petroleum source.

Biodiesel, biofuels, Ethanol, Indirect Land Use, International