European banks, pension funds and private equity funds have given financial assistance worth more than €450 million to Malaysian palm oil giant Sime Darby, responsible for environmental degradation and violations of national regulations in Liberia, according to new research from Friends of the Earth Europe .
As European parliamentarians vote in committees this week on the future of biofuels in Europe, 113 civil society organisations and coalitions, together representing millions of people, expressed their concerns about the environmental, economic and social impacts of European biofuel policy.
Between 2009 and 2012, French banks granted more than 4 billion euro in loans to European producers of agrofuels, and have issued these companies stocks and bonds for a total amount of more than 3 billion euro according to new research from Friends of the Earth France and Oxfam France. The groups called on French banks to stop financing agrofuel producers – who threaten global food security and are fuelling land grabs, especially in Liberia.
Reforms to Europe's rules on biofuels were top of the agenda at a meeting of EU energy ministers in Brussels today.
It was the first time ministers commented on proposals to limit the quantities of crop-based biofuels that can count towards EU renewable energy targets.  The policy was proposed by the European Commission last year as a means to address so-called 'indirect land use change' (ILUC) where agriculture has to expand to accommodate biofuels demand. 
Cape Town/Brussels - Biofuels have driven nearly 300 large-scale land grabs worldwide, a new report by GRAIN reveals today , on the eve of a meeting of EU energy ministers to debate the future of biofuels in Europe. 
EU targets have put Europe at the forefront of increasing global demand for environmentally and socially damaging biofuels – demand which has prompted some 17 million hectares, equal to almost the entire agricultural area of Germany, to be grabbed from local populations over the past decade, says GRAIN.
Monrovia, Liberia – Palm oil companies are grabbing more than 1.5 million acres of land in Liberia and are violating the human rights of local communities, according to Liberian NGOs including Friends of the Earth Liberia.
On the eve of a United Nations meeting in Liberia, that will discuss the future of development in Liberia, Friends of the Earth International is backing the local NGOs' demands for the government to renegotiate contracts for land concessions and reassess its agricultural development strategy.
The European Commission last Friday approved a certification scheme which would brand biofuels produced from palm oil as 'sustainable', despite evidence that their production contributes to deforestation, peatland degradation, disputes over land rights, and climate change.Greenpeace and Friends of the Earth Europe argue that legitimising the use of palm oil biofuels by approving the scheme by the Round Table for Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO) is inconsistent with the Commission's own analysis pub
Burning whole trees in power stations can be dirtier than coal, concludes a new report in the UK by Friends of the Earth, the RSPB, and Greenpeace.
Using the UK government's own data, the report 'Dirtier Than Coal, finds that electricity generated by burning conifer trees could increase greenhouse gas emissions by 80% compared to coal over a 20 year timeframe.
Reforms announced today by the European Commission will not stop biofuels pushing up food prices and accelerating climate change, says Friends of the Earth Europe. 
The proposals include a 5% cap on crop-based biofuels, which goes some way to controlling the quantity of crops which will be used for fuel. But, this limit is still above current consumption levels and will not prevent biofuels competing with crops for food or pressurising food prices in tight markets.
Brussels, 15 October – EU chiefs must follow through with plans to slash biofuel use, Friends of the Earth Europe warned today as crucial decisions on biofuels policy reform are taken by European Commissioners in Brussels.
The warning comes on the eve of World Food Day, against the backdrop of a looming food crisis – the third in five years.