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Greenpeace: EU's biofuel plan falls short

Oct. 18, 2012 at 9:38 AM

BRUSSELS, Oct. 18 (UPI) -- Environmental advocacy group Greenpeace said the EU didn't go far enough in limiting the amount of food crops that can be used for biofuels.

The European Commission announced Wednesday it was considering limiting the contribution of biofuels derived from food crops in an effort to make its renewable energy objectives more sustainable.

"The use of food-based biofuels to meet the 10 percent renewable energy target of the renewable energy directive will be limited to 5 percent," the commission said in a statement.

Advocacy group Greenpeace said using biofuels derived from food crops not only contributes to higher food prices but also could result in more greenhouse gas emissions as natural carbon sinks are farmed for the production of energy.

The European measure, the group said, doesn't go far enough. Using biodiesel derived from vegetable oils, said Greenpeace, is one of the ways in which the EU's green energy policies could create more, not less, emissions.

"Used wisely biofuels can be part of the solutions needed for a fossil-fuel free future," a Greenpeace statement read. "But when the current biofuels policy increases food prices, while making climate change worse through additional deforestation and unsustainable farming practices then the system isn't working and has to change."

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