EU agrofuels policy is having serious impacts on biodiversity, food provision and the livelihoods and food sovereignty of local communities in the global South and in the EU itself, as well as on climate change. Yet we seem locked into it because of lobbying by industry coupled with EU government collusion, delay and confusion.
The Uruguayan state-owned biofuels enterprise ALUR challenges many assumptions about the societal implications of biofuels production, as it supports local livelihoods, protects the environment, and is rooted in principles of social inclusion and national sovereignty.
The possible impact of agrofuels on the human right to adequate food for the most oppressed and marginalised social groups must be considered prior to applying policies and programmes that encourage the production, investment and trade of agrofuels.
Implicit in the global land grab is the potential for a major water grab. A study of sub-Saharan Africa raises concerns that large-scale commercial agriculture could cause unforeseen but disproportionate impacts on access to water by small-scale producers.
Ben McKay, Sérgio Sauer, Ben Richardson, Roman Herre
15 September 2014
Flex crops, spread over greater expanses of land, are increasingly interlinked through international exchange in food, feed and fuel. Brazilian exports of sugarcane ethanol to the US are in part influenced by the domestic US production of maize ethanol, which in turn is shaped by the price of feed and the soybean supply.
Jennifer Franco, Lucia Goldfarb, David Fig, Luisa Mendonca, Les Levidow, Mireille Hoenicke
06 April 2010
In recent years, there has been renewed interest in developing agrofuels on a large scale as an alternative to fossil fuel. EU biofuels policy, in particular, assumes that the environmental impacts associated with agrofuels production will be largely beneficial. This study questions such optimistic assumptions.
The Transnational Institute (TNI) -- through its Agrarian Justice work area -- is starting a major research on the rise of BRICS and middle income countries (MICs) and its implications for global agrarian transformations, with special attention to Chinese investments in Southeast Asia in collaboration with several universities.
Is there such a thing as clean coal, gas and nuclear power? What is the actual meaning of clean energy as mentioned by Obama in his State of the Union speech? And will it have any effect on climate change?
Maria Luisa Mendonça, Fabio T. Pitta, Carlos Vinicius Xavier
18 July 2013
An examination of ethanol production in Brazil, highlighting the role of financial capital, the territorial expansion of agribusiness and the impacts on labour relations and indigenous peoples and peasant farmers.
Biofuel production did not create, but only exacerbated the global food crisis that had been building up for years, as policies promoted by the World Bank, IMF, and WTO encouraged the conversion of economies that are largely food-self-sufficient into chronic food importers.