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Biofuels: a threat to food security and landrights


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Topic: Biofuels


Policy recommendations

  • The European Union must  abandon the 10% target for renewable energy incorporation in transport as this leads to land grabbing in developing countries to increase the production of biofuels, to the detriment of poverty eradication and food security
  • The European Union must address land grabbing by expanding the current sustainability criteria to include social standards, by for one recognising land rights
  • These criteria must be legally binding to guarantee that the rural populations who live off marginal lands and forests are not hurt by expanding agricultural production;
  • The European Union must consider the effects of Indirect Land Use Change in the Renewable Energy Directive. The directive must not undermine the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions and global food security;
  • The monitoring and evaluation of the implementation of the RED must take specific note of the impact of EU biofuels targets on food security and other development issues.

Background Info

The butterfly effect of EU Biofuels policy
This website, launched by the organisations Transport & Environment, Birdlife International and European Environmental Bureau in 2015, explains the social and environmental impacts of Europe's biofuels policy.

European Parliament briefing on EU biofuels policy
Briefing on the EU biofuels policy, published by the European Parliamentary Research Service and written by Didier Bourguignon. The briefing includes a review of the EU biofuels policy, developments in the biofuels sector and the position of different stakeholders.

Spotlight on EU policy coherence for development. The real life impact of EU policies on the poor. Chapter 3: Food and security
CONCORD article about the incoherence of the EU biofuels policy. The production of biofuels has led to the rise of food prices and the increase of food insecurity in developing countries.

Note on the impacts of the EU biofuels on the right to food.
The previous UN Special Rapporteur on the Right to Food, Olivier de Schutter, published a statement in April 2013 on the impact of the current EU biofuels policy on food security in developing countries.