In early July, the EU’s new “Green Fuel Law” was published. Although it aims to solve the carbon emission problem of one of the world’s dirtiest industries, the shipping industry, the document has caused quite a stir among NGOs and the renewable energy industry.
Although the European Union hopes to implement policies that will help the shipping industry transition to sustainable fuels, European environmental organizations rightly question why biomass, or energy derived from burning plant and animal materials, is still in the majority of trees. Belongs to the accepted fuel.
In addition, the European Union’s “green” concept, that hydrogen is carbon-free, has also been criticized.
The influential NGO Transportation and Environment (T&E) disagrees with the statement that renewable hydrogen does not exist today. This response has been recognized by the shipping industry: “The leakage of the draft multi-plan for the EU to force shipping to switch to more environmentally friendly fuel options confirms the biggest concern of the industry and green NGOs, that is, these rules will create compliance minefields and will cost money. Hundreds of millions of euros will eventually push shipowners to choose fuels that can lock fossil fuels in the supply chain for decades.”
The Council of Palm Oil Producing Countries (CPOPC), which represents the major palm oil producing countries in Indonesia and Malaysia, has been working to address the EU The problem of lack of clean energy
is obvious. The EU lacks viable alternatives to clean fuels. Between the need for clean energy by environmental organizations and the need for industry to maintain the economy, the European Parliament has also passed a landmark law to make the EU greenhouse The gas emission target is legally binding.
But in this whirlpool with European NGOs, industries, and governments, the major palm oil producing countries have provided a viable solution. The Council of Palm Oil Producing Countries (CPOPC), which represents the major palm oil producing countries in Indonesia and Malaysia, has been addressing the EU’s lack of clean energy options in a series of blogs.
CPOPC emphasized its views in a statement issued, which stated that the EU cannot successfully address climate change without adopting a non-discriminatory policy on biofuels. The statement claimed that previous renewable energy directives and indirect land use contribution (ILUC) theories unfairly slandered palm oil. Including plot highlights; ILUC determined from 2008-2016 data, ignoring the larger land footprint of qualified soybeans and rapeseed crops.
A new study identified 43 million square kilometers of land use changes since 1960, while palm oil planting areas affected only 250,000 square kilometers. Productivity factor (PF) makes palm oil the best crop for sustainable development in the world due to its high yield. These arguments are not without reason. If the EU uses these parameters to analyze biofuel data, palm oil will become a renewable feedstock for biofuels.
ILUC is a good theory, but unrealistic
The EU must recognize that ILUC is a concept that has no place to address climate change. You just have to think about what happened to soy, which MEP Bas Eickhout calls the “new palm oil”.
Initially, the EU tried to facilitate trade relations with the United States by approving US soybeans as an EU biofuel. Now, the new Biden administration has launched its own biofuel program, threatening the supply of American soybeans to the European Union. This may lead to a cascading effect with unintended consequences.
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If the EU needs to find other sources of soybeans, it can turn to Brazil, which may force India and China to become edible oil The two major importing countries-as the world’s soybean prices rise, they are increasingly dependent on palm oil producing countries. Since India and China are less concerned about sustainability, this may lead to an increase in global deforestation.
If palm oil is used as an energy source in the European Union, for example, these extra volumes can help create a green version of hydrogen.
Can palm-based energy “green” other additional energy sources?
Palm oil is likely to “green” other energy sources. Malaysian chemical engineers are at the forefront of producing zero or carbon-neutral palm oil, increasing production efficiency and can produce an additional 3 million tons of palm oil.
This number may increase by improving the land use efficiency of 2.5 million smallholder farmers in Indonesia and Malaysia. If palm oil is used as an energy source in the EU, for example, these extra quantities can help create a green version of hydrogen.
Rely on mandatory due diligence
The palm oil industry has long invested in sustainable production. Today, the industry is supported by national certifications under the Malaysian Sustainable Palm Oil (MSPO) and Indonesia Sustainable Palm Oil (ISPO) programs, as well as the global RSPO and ISCC certifications. This has led to the fact that the supply of sustainable vegetable oils is still superior, but little known in the global commodity market.
To further assure the European Union, Indonesia and Malaysia argue that their forests are doing better than countries that grow competing crops. This is worth noting because the European Parliament passed a resolution in October 2020 to stop and reverse EU-driven deforestation.
The same resolution advocates mandatory due diligence requirements for forest products provided by MSPO and ISPO. The MSPO in Malaysia specifically integrates the support of governmental, social and environmental non-governmental organizations, as well as the strong commitment of the industry.
However, if the EU continues to crack down on palm oil, the efforts of these mandatory national programs may fail. As the main driving force behind the sustainable development of the palm oil industry, the EU’s opposition to its use in biofuels may force palm oil-producing countries to abandon costly sustainable development initiatives as the industry competes with oils. competing vegetables to survive.
As leaders in the fight against climate change, the producer countries cannot lose the orientation of the European Union. Your decarbonization plan will face challenges, but the combination of palm oil and other sustainable alternatives should