Special Notice : URGENT: Please do not sacrifice rainforests, communities, biodiversity, food security and climate stability for the sake of expanding biofuels
Please take 2 minutes to do this action at: http://www.regenwald.org/protestaktion.php?id=124
The European Parliament have now voted on the Biomass Action Plan, but the final decision will be made by the European Commission and is expected around 10th January.
The Parliament have acknowledged that a lack of clear environmental standards and safeguards could have significant negative effects, such as an increase in tropical deforestation and agriculture intensification and biodiversity losses in Europe and abroad, while failing to reduce greenhouse gas emissions significantly. However, the majority of MEPs voted against import bans against 'deforestation diesel' feedstocks, and for rapid market expansion even before any possibly safeguards are put in place. They also voted to abolish compulsory set-asides in Europe - even though the European Environment Agency and conservation organisations throughout Europe have shown that this will cause a large-scale decline in biodiversity across Europe.
Finally, there are reports that the European Parliament voted to class peat as a long-term renewable form of energy and biomass. Peat has as much or more carbon per tonne as other fossil fuels, and the International Panel on Climate Change states clearly that it should not be classed as renewable energy or bioenergy.
Please tell the European Commission now that they must prevent biofuels from causing ever greater deforestation, biodiversity losses, or evictions and impoverishment of local communities. Unrestrained biofuel expansion will accelerate, not slow down climate change, as peatlands and rainforests across the world are converted to energy crop monocultures and release their carbon in the process. Latin American NGOs are writing to the Commission to tell them that they want food sovereignty, not biofuels for export to Europe. By writing to the Commission now, you can support their efforts, too.
A pre-prepared letter is at: http://www.regenwald.org/protestaktion.php?id=124. However, please note that personal emails would be even more effective and the email addresses of all the relevant commissioners and (cabinet) members of their teams can be found at this webpage. Please forward this alert widely to your networks and contacts.
Andrew Boswell on behalf of biofuelwatch