Bio-Fueling Poverty

Why the EU renewable-fuel target may be disastrous for poor people

Published: 29 October 2007

In January of this year, the European Commission published its Renewable Energy Roadmap, proposing a mandatory target that biofuels must provide ten per cent of member states’ transport fuels by 2020. This target is creating a scramble to supply in the South, posing a serious threat to vulnerable people at risk from land-grabbing, exploitation, and deteriorating food security. It is unacceptable that poor people in developing countries bear the costs of emissions reductions in the EU. To avoid this, the Commission must include social standards in its sustainability framework, and develop mechanisms by which the ten per cent target can be revised if it is found to be contributing to the destruction of vulnerable people’s livelihoods.

Read the report in Spanish:
Amenaza biocombustible – Por qué el objetivo de consumo de biocombustibles de la UE puede ser negativo para las personas pobres (pdf 202kb)

Read the report in French:
La pauvreté roule aux biocarburants : Pourquoi l'objectif de l’UE pour les sources d'énergie renouvelables pourrait s'avérer désastreux pour les gens défavorisées

Read the report in Portuguese:
Biocombustível da pobreza? Porque a meta estabelecida para o uso de combustíveis renováveis na União Européia pode ser desastrosa para pessoas em situação de pobreza (pdf 175kb)