Keywords: biofuels, agriculture, environmental sustainability, sustainable development, access to food, renewable energy, climate change, European Union, EU environmental policy, crops no–food, transport emissions, agricultural prices
Biofuels and EU's choices
In the European Union, growing attention to biofuels is directly linked to the need to cut greenhouse gas emissions, and lies therefore in the more general scope of actions to combat climate change. More specifically, in order to cut emissions from transport, the EU has chosen to opt decidedly for first generation biofuels, expecting them to make up 10% of fuels on the market by 2020. Amongst other things, this will add to the tendency of agricultural prices to increase and become more volatile, favouring the already strong financial speculations and weighing heavily on the possibilities of poorer countries to access food. Given these conditions, the choice to privilege first generation biofuels seems much more functional to the interests and profit strategies of a restricted number of big industrial groups, rather than to the so–claimed general environmental objectives.