“Deforestation Biofuels” Awareness Grows
The fact that all biofuels are not created equal in terms of environmental benefits is starting to get more press coverage and policy-makers are being forced to face the issue of “deforestation biofuels” [search] — those like palm and soya oils that destroy rainforests releasing much more carbon than they prevent. The European Commission (EC) now admits that “Europe's dash for biofuels could accelerate the destruction of tropical rainforests“. This is particularly gratifying because EcoInternet was the first to raise the issue of deforestation biofuels internationally through several protests over recent years — including campaigning against EC arbitrary biofuel goals which did not differentiate between environmental desirability of biofuels produced locally and those sourced from cleared rainforests. Here is our most recent alert. There is now an entire movement spawned by our actions. Building awareness is one thing, but actually stopping the rush to deforestation biofuels is another. It is unconscionable that rather than reducing their energy use, both Europe and the U.S. are pushing biofuels as a means to continue their conspicuous consumption of energy. And Indonesia wants to be paid to protect their rainforests even as they ramp up rainforest destruction for oil palm plantations to produce biofuel, not appreciating that these plantations on peatlands that burn frequently is extremely poor tropical land managment. We must resist the expansion of rainforest biofuels — as the Dutch are trying to do — or we will lose both our rainforests and our climate system.