MEPs raise ambition on transport with sustainable biofuels


EURACTIV reports that “contrary to the European Commission’s initial proposal, the European Parliament voted on Tuesday to increase targets for sustainable energy and reintroduce a sub-target for transport, by using ‘sustainable’ biofuels. Under the compromise reached by rapporteur José Blanco-Lopez (S&D, Spain), Member States will still not have to meet national binding renewable energy targets and will get a 10% ‘flexibility’ margin. The Commission is supposed to step in if by 2025 EU countries are not on track to achieve the Union’s objective of 35%. Currently at 10%, the Commission had dropped this target in its recast proposal due to public opposition to deforestation driven by crop-based biofuels. MEPs in the ITRE committee plan to achieve this target via biofuels and biogas that are compliant with the Commission’s rules on greenhouse-gas emission savings. This excludes oil-based biodiesel, but includes crop-based bioethanol: ‘The threshold is 50% [of GHG savings compared to fossil fuels] and we do on average 66%, so even if indirect emissions are to be included, we would still be well above 50%,’ said Emmanuel Desplechin, secretary-general of ePURE, representing bioethanol industries in Brussels.”

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