International experts keep pushing for more biofuels


As governments struggle to address climate change, energy and environment experts around the world continue to stress the importance of sustainable biofuels such as European ethanol to reducing carbon emissions.

The most recent is Fatih Birol, the head of the International Energy Agency, who highlighted ethanol’s important potential for decarbonising transport. “Ethanol is very important because it is part of the solution in terms of reducing the oil import dependence of many countries as well as helping reduce CO2 emissions from the transport sector as well as other sectors,” Birol told EURACTIV at the COP24 meeting in Katowice, Poland.

It’s not the first time the IEA has highlighted the need for more biofuels. The agency recently declared that bioenergy has a huge contribution to make in the global energy future and called for a bigger scale-up of conventional and advanced biofuels. The IEA noted that biofuels and electric vehicles are complementary solutions to decarbonise transport.

An equally compelling call was sounded by the Biofuture Platform, an international group made up of representatives of 20 countries and several supporting organizations, including IEA, the UN FAO and IRENA. In a new report the group says the world’s greenhouse gas reduction goals cannot be met without greater use of biofuels and bioproducts.

These international pleas come as Europe struggles to reduce emissions from its transport sector. It’s clear the EU needs to use all sustainable tools at hand to fight climate change – and take advantage of the important contribution that low-carbon liquid fuels can make now and in the future. This includes greater use of European renewable ethanol, which reduces GHG emissions by more than 70% on average compared to fossil fuels.

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