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Saturday, January 28, 2012

Leak from Brussels : Biofuels not that eco-friendly as described

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Fuel in our cars, disregard if petrol or diesel, is polluting our environment. No question about that. A try to reduce the harmful effects - greenhouse gas emissions - is useful. No question about that either. But what if the amount of reduced emissions is not that high as indicated ?

A recent leak from Brussels published on Euractiv claims, that exactly this happens.

The CO2 numbers we know are not including the effect of an important factor - Indirect Land Use Change (ILUC).

ILUC happens, when a new land is created for fields, where plants for biofuels are growed. It means mainly deforestation all over the world, mainly in places like South East Asia. That means, that with burning of biofuel we get less direct greenhouse gas emissions in the air but with cutting forests we produce more emissions at the end.

These messages are coming in the connection to the awaited EU legislative proposals on biofuels in the spring.
In its recent review of the Fuel Quality Directive, the EU proposed a default value of 107g CO2 equivalent per megajoule of fuel (CO2/mj) for oil from tar sands, as compared to 87.5g CO2/mj for crude oil, reflecting the greater environmental harm that its production causes.

It a is 22% difference. A lot. 

EU intends to constantly decrease the amount of greenhouse gas emissions, starting with 35% less emissions than conventional petrol and the number should grow up to 60% in 2018.

You can read more details in the Euractive article.

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