Bio-Energy: the next Great Mistake in the Fight against Climate Change?

Speakers: Deepak Rughani (Biofuelwatch) Clare Coffey (Action Aid)

review by Siobhan Carleton-Green


Bio-fuels have been held up as the answer to our renewable energy needs by politicians and energy companies. In reality this new industry has already caused more harm than good. Land that once fed families in South Africa is now being used to grow crops for Bio-fuels. Already land the size of Germany has been grabbed causing food poverty for the local population. Biomass fuel (wood burning mostly) when grown has the effect of destroying the biodiversity and if we knock out biodiversity reducing out carbon emission will not matter.

Here are some of the facts:

  • Plantations hold only 4 to 20% of the carbon that a natural forest can.
  • Bio-energy is more 1.5 times more damaging than coal.
  • Using food for fuel causes food prices to increase already by 36%

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