European biofuel deal falls short on environmental safeguards- Lynn Boylan MEP
Dublin Sinn Féin MEP Lynn Boylan has expressed disappointment following today's European Parliament plenary vote on changes to EU biofuels policy in Strasbourg.
MEPs voted in favour of changes to the current policy which is set out in the Renewable Energy and Fuel Quality Directives.
Ms Boylan said:
“The original EU directive on first generation biofuels was undoubtedly flawed.
Many crucial factors were overlooked in the formulation of that directive and the ensuing policy had a detrimental impact on the environment, reduced our food self-sufficiency, and increased food prices.
The revision of two key pieces of energy legislation has taken five
long years of inter-institutional negotiations. Unfortunately this review did
not meet expectations and a lot of potentially progressive work by the
Parliament was lost in the face of a relentless Council.
There is no doubt about it, this deal is far weaker than anything we would have envisaged and I am disappointed by the Council’s attitude. Indirect land use changes should have been accounted for instead of just reported on and advanced biofuels should have had a stronger target
Whilst I would have preferred to see a much lower cap on first generation biofuels, the 7% limit which has been agreed upon will see their growth curbed, which is good news for the environment, for biodiversity and for famine in the developing world.
After five years of long and difficult negotiations I'm sure many are ready to put this issue to bed. But if we are truly going to commit to a future of sustainable transport in the EU this review can only be the beginning.”