7 December 2016

A number of existing and emerging EU policies and initiatives to green plastics, packaging, fuels and more through plant-based sources are at risk of backfiring with big social and environmental impacts, according to this new report.

Substituting fossil-based products for plant-based ones is the core idea of the 'bioeconomy', which is promoted in the EU through renewable energy policies and a specific Bioeconomy Strategy, and is likely to be included in future legislation on plastics and packaging.

7 December 2016

A number of existing and emerging EU policies and initiatives to green plastics, packaging, fuels and more through plant-based sources are at risk of backfiring with big social and environmental impacts.

Substituting fossil-based products for plant-based ones is the core idea of the 'bioeconomy', which is promoted by the EU, governments and industry, with the promised benefit of reduced reliance on fossil fuels. However, this can come at a high environmental and social price. Friends of the Earth Europe outline their policy positions on the bioeconomy in this briefing.

25 January 2016

The laws that protect nature across Europe – the EU's Birds and Habitats Directives (known as the 'nature directives') – are currently being reviewed by the European Union as part of the REFIT (Regulatory Fitness and Performance Programme) process. The review will continue until the end of 2016.

In this report, Friends of the Earth outlines its concerns that the EU may weaken these crucial laws that form the cornerstone of nature protection and restoration.

10 October 2014

Europe has failed to see the whole picture on biofuels - turning a blind eye to the impacts of biofuel production on people and the environment in producer countries.

28 May 2014

Land the size of Poland and Sweden combined, will be needed to produce crops and wood for Europe's bioenergy needs by 2030, this new research reveals.

28 May 2014

New research by the Vienna University of Economics and Business (WU) for Friends of the Earth Europe shows how Europe’s consumption of bioenergy is exerting unparalleled and
unsustainable new pressures on the world’s land and forests.


With demand for bioenergy (crops and wood used for transport fuel, heating and electricity) set to more than double between now and 2030, Europe will require an area of land and
forest the size of Sweden and Poland combined to meet our bioenergy needs.

22 May 2014

New research from Friends of the Earth in Indonesia, Liberia, Uganda and Nigeria, shows how Wilmar International, one of the world's largest palm oil traders, continue their abusive practices of deforestation and land-grabbing, despite promises to stop.

9 September 2013

This study by the International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD) for Friends of the Earth Europe finds that Europe’s drivers are being forced to fill their tanks with increasing amounts of palm oil, with reliance on the controversial biofuel set to rise even further.

According to the data, palm oil use has increased much more than predicted and now stands at 20% of the biodiesel mix. The EU consumes 40% more palm oil (for food, fuel and cosmetics) today compared to 6 years ago, despite continual warnings about the unsustainability of palm oil expansion. 

2 July 2013

The European Parliament and the Council of the EU are currently considering reforms that could change the course of biofuels policy – by ensuring that only biofuels that "help achieving substantial emission cuts, do not directly compete with food and are more sustainable at the same time" are promoted.

However, a new analysis by Searchinger shows that the proposal being debated does not deliver this.

1 December 2012

This briefing examines the root causes of Europe's biofuels policy, and its costly environmental impacts - particularly on Indirect Land Use Change (ILUC), CO2 emissions, food prices, water usage, biodiversity, and landgrabbing.

Pages