Corporate Europe Observatory’s new briefing, "Sugarcane ethanol: a sweet solution for Europe's fuel addiction?", highlights the impacts of sugarcane production in Brazil, including harsh working conditions and the destruction of some of Brazil’s most important forests and wildlife habitats.
The article also highlights how the claimed climate benefits of sugar cane ethanol are strongly dependent of indirect impacts, which up to now have not been taken into account. Current certification initiatives, such as the "Better Sugarcane Initiative, are top down approaches that lack support from small producers or affected communities.
Nina Holland, agrofuels campaigner at Corporate Europe Observatory, said: “The Brazilian agrofuel industry has been working hard to tell MEPs that sugarcane ethanol is a sustainable source of biofuel. But this is not the case. Real measures against climate change must be taken, and the EU 10% agrofuel target is not one of them.”
In July, the European Parliament's Environment Committee voted to cut the proposed 10% target to 4% by 2015. Many calls are now going out to the Industry, Research and Energy (ITRE) Committee to drop the proposed 10% agrofuel target in their upcoming vote on the issue on 11 September.
To read the full article, see: http://www.corporateeurope.org/agrofuels/content/2009/02/sugar-cane-ethanol-not-so-sweet