Friday, February 17, 2006

EC seeks to accelerate biofuels

The European Commission has adopted a new Strategy for Biofuels.

“There has never been a better moment to push the case for biofuels,” said Mariann Fischer Boel, Commissioner for Agriculture and Rural Development, citing oil prices, the Kyoto Protocol, energy security and CAP reform.

But the Commission also said that the introduction of biofuels would reduce the pressure to produce more fuel-efficient cars. The Low Carbon Kid finds this one hard to get his head round as 10% max is the % of biofuel likely to be added to carbon fuels.

Development Commissioner Louis Michel also highlighted the potential opportunities for sugar-producing developing countries, notably those affected by the sugar reform. The Commission said it may revise the biofuels directive, encouraging Member States to favour biofuels, and pledged to:
  • examine how biofuels can best contribute to emission targets
  • propose a specific group to consider biofuels opportunities in rural development programmes
  • make sugar production for bioethanol eligible for CAP support schemes
  • assess possibilities to process cereal intervention stocks;
  • bring forward a forestry action plan
  • look into the possibilities for using animal by-products and clean waste
  • assess a proposal for separate customs codes for biofuels imports
  • develop a coherent Biofuels Assistance Package for developing countries
  • support the development of an industry-led ‘Biofuel Technology Platform’ which will make recommendations for R&D in this sector.


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