E85 Boondoggle of the Day: EU Cuts Biofuel Goals, Blocks U.S. Corn Juice

Edward Niedermeyer
by Edward Niedermeyer

Foodstock-based, first-gen biofuels are becoming increasingly unpopular. And so the European Union (EU) has cut– er, “modified” biofuel goals. Last year, the EU committed to increasing biofuel transport usage to ten percent by 2020. The International Herald-Tribune reports that the goal has been ratified, but a number of caveats have been added. The new plan calls for five percent of transport fuels to be derived from renewable sources by 2015, with at least a fifth of that amount from “new alternatives that do not compete with food production.” When biofuel usage hits ten percent in 2020, 40 percent of that amount will have to come from second-gen, non-foodstock fuels. That goal will be reviewed in 2014. Of course, these plans are worrying biofuel producers; they’re stepping-up a publicity campaign warning that “alternatives to biofuels like hydrogen and electricity – while they might help to reduce tailpipe pollution – still would require burning of fossil fuels to manufacture.” European biofuel producers are worried about the threat of American imports. U.S. farmers receive significant subsidies and incentives that make European exportation particularly appealing. A formal EU investigation is underway, considering punitive tariffs against American E85– unless the U.S. government removes biofuel incentives. Good luck with that.

Edward Niedermeyer
Edward Niedermeyer

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  • Jerseydevil Jerseydevil on Sep 14, 2008

    Good for them. The promotion and use of ethanol has had world wide reprocussions, none of them good. I would prefer no more ehtanol at all in the USA - good luck with the corn lobby being so powerful. I try to buy ethanol free gasoline. There is none to be had. Sounds like Monsanto was involved. Suprised - they are.

  • Blindfaith Blindfaith on Sep 14, 2008

    Now is a good time for the US to adjust for their governement supplied social programs (education, healt care, retirement and many others). This would add thousands of dollars to the price of a car from Europe. And, the then put the tariffs in to supporting SS, Medicare, Education, disability balance our budget.

  • Shaker Shaker on Sep 15, 2008

    Innovate, innovate, innovate.

  • IggyDalrymple IggyDalrymple on Sep 25, 2008

    The government shouldn't subsidize any type of energy. The gov should only subsidize academic research. When they subsidize a consumer product, you can bet they're dancing to the tune of a special interest. Iggy