|Title||Biofuel's Time of Transition|
|Year of Publication||2008|
|Authors||Kammen DM, O'Hare M, Lemoine D|
|Keywords||biofuels, land-use change|
As it turned out, 2007 was a tough year for biofuels development, slowing even more quickly than we expected due to:
• Excess and stranded capacity in the United States, Europe and Brazil. For example, the estimated idle capacity in 2007 was approximately 20 percent in the United States and approximately 30 percent in Germany.
It also looked as though the European Union (EU) governments and the public were beginning to wonder whether biofuels would do more harm than good as evidenced by articles such as: The End of Cheap Food” (The Economist, December 6, 2007). “Biofuels: Crime Against Humanity” (BBC News, October 27, 2007).
But a “bust” is expected as any industry moves beyond start-up and faces the challenge of scaling. The reality has already started to set in: Biofuels won’t solve all of our energy problems, but they won’t cause world hunger either. They have a role to play in our energy portfolio. Biofuels are a signpost of the future diversity that we expect in transport fuels, and they can be produced sustainably or unsustainably. It is the role of regulators to ensure that the incentive system around biofuels drives sustainable production and the use of feedstocks and processes that produce a net greenhouse gas (GHG) reduction.
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