*The grain required to fill a 25-gallon SUV gas tank with ethanol could feed one person for a year* - Lester Brown, Earth Policy Institute
What's wrong with Agrofuels (biofuels)?*Deforestation, peatland destruction and the use of nitrogen fertilisers mean that agrofuels are worse for the climate than fossil fuel. Paul Crutzen (Nobel prize-winner) suggests that rapeseed biodiesel is up to 70% worse for climate change than ordinary fossil diesel (even though it's grown in the UK and involves no deforestation or peatland destruction) due to nitrogen fertiliser giving off nitrous oxide - a 300x more damaging greenhouse gas than CO2. Across the global South people are being evicted, often violently, from their land to make way for agrofuel plantations. According to Jean Ziegler (until recently the UN special rapporteur on the right to food) 12 million more people are going hungry now than a year ago due to rising food prices, something that agrofuels make a large contribution to.
Instead we should:
dramatically reduce fossil fuel use,
live more locally
improve public transport and
investigate environmentally friendly bio-fuels made from waste oils.
Information from Friends of the Earth Scotland
For more info on biofuels visit: www.biofuelwatch.org.uk
Also read the feature on Biofuels in The Ecologist magazine here.