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n an effort to stimulate demand, Indonesia passed biofuel mandates last year that require the country's cars and trucks to include either ethanol or palm-oil biodiesel in their fuel mix.
From 2000-2009, Indonesia supplied more than half of the global palm oil market, eclipsing Malaysia's production in 2006 to become the world leader. Indonesia's palm oil exports increased nearly 11 million tons over the decade, or about 27 percent per year.
This expansion came at an annual expense of some 340,000 hectares of Indonesian countryside, mostly tropical lowland forests. The government plans to establish about 1.4 million hectares of new plantations by 2010, according to the Indonesian Palm Oil Commission. The industry group estimates that more than 7 million hectares of plantations have been established, leaving an additional 24.5 million hectares available for future expansion.
Sutopo Puro Nugroho, the spokesperson for the Meteorology, Climatology and Geophysics Agency (BMKG) has acknowledged that for months 43 million people on the two islands have been inhaling toxic fumes. Yet, he admitted, the number of unrecorded cases was likely much higher.
originally posted by: TiredofControlFreaks
We need that palm oil. Biofuels make first world people feel good! Like eco-warriors, saving the planet and all!
Bioethanol comes almost entirely from two sources - Brazil (80%) and
This doesn’t mean that all fuel actually contains 5% biofuel, only that it may contain anywhere between none and 5%.
The EU currently has a 5.75 percent mandate directive in place, and was scheduled to move to 10 percent by 2020. But in September 2013, we reported that the European Parliament voted to cap first generation ethanol consumption at 6% of fuel demand by 2020 rather than the 10% originally mandated by the Renewable Energy Directive. The vote passed with 356 votes in favor, 327 against and 14 abstentions. Tripartite negotiations with the Council of 28 member states and the European Commission are taking place later in the year to achieve a final rule.
The biggest mandate news of the year worldwide was the Italian government’s decision in October to create a 0.6% advanced biofuels blending mandate by 2018, the first in Europe to set up such a policy to boost demand for next generation fuels. That figure will increase to 1% by 2022. Beta Renewables produces 75 million liters per year at its facility in Crescentino and the country expects three more cellulosic ethanol plants to come online in southern Italy during the next year.
Last week, we reported that France’s national oil body UFIP has agreed to increase the biodiesel blending mandate to 8% from the current 7%, with the official publication expected before the year’s end. It warned, however, that going above 7% may void some car manufacture warranties by going above the EU-wide approved 7% level.
In October we reported that in the UK, biofuel use in transport reached 4% of the fuel supply during the second quarter of 2014, but ethanol has reached 4.5% in the past. Ethanol blending is capped at 4.75%. The Renewable Energy Association is strongly pushing for E10 blends to help the country achieve the 10% biofuel mandate set by the EU for 2020.
The EU's scheme for certifying biofuels as sustainable requires them to emit 35% less CO2 than regular fuel, increasing to 60% by 2018, making palm oil, soy bean, rapeseed and sunflower looking all but dead.
Palm oil biodiesel also received another blow on Friday, with the US Environmental Protection Agency suggesting it fails to meet the US requirement of emitting at least 20% less carbon than diesel from crude oil.
Robbie Blake, biofuels campaigner, at Friends of the Earth Europe, told me: "It's getting quite indisputable that the use of soy or palm oil to fuel our cars is even dirtier than conventional fossil fuels. Forests in Asia and South America are being destroyed by the expansion of plantations to meet the European market. It's a delusion for politicians to think that biodiesel will solve climate change."
The European Union's target for 10% of all transport fuels to be biofuels by 2020 has been described as "unethical" because the production of some types violates human rights and damages the environment. But the same researchers described do nothing to find alternative to the fossil fuels that currently power transport as "immoral".
So the difficult task of distinguishing good and bad biofuels remains essential, as does the research of even more promising technologies, such as algae and seaweed.