False Solution Implemented: Biofuels

biocombustibles 3Biofuels, also called agrofuels, are presented in Central America as clean or green technology and its mass production is promoted by decision makers in official documents (see below). Biofuels are elaborated of organic material and they are made of African palm, sugar cane, corn and wheat, among others foodstuffs. Enormous financial interests are articulated around their research, production and commercialization, although adverse impacts and negative externalities on public health, food and nutritional security and biological diversity are well-known. Their mass production presents the following problems:

 They are mainly produced in developing countries for export.
 They displace people forcibly off their lands and foster land and resource grabbing.
 They are produced in monoculture systems, which is the agricultural system with higher water use and carbon emission.
 They reduce available water for human consumption.
 They compete and, in some cases, even substitute food production.
 They rise the prices of those potential basic grains to be converted into biofuels.

The main reason for Central American governments to have decided to feed cars and other machinery in the North instead of assuring food security for their populations can be found in the millionaire economic benefits calculated in mass producing and exporting biofuels.  Those substantial economic benefits are guaranteed by the ambitious consumption targets presented, particularly, by the United States (Energy Independence and Security Act,  2007) and the EU (EU Strategy for Biofuels, 2006).

Some of the documents showing estate support to mass production of biofuels in Central America:

Central America Sustainable Energy Strategy 2020 (SICA/UN 2007)

Estrategia Regional Agroambiental y de Salud de Centroamérica 2009-2024, ERAS (SICA 2008)

Central America Agricultural Policy 2008-2017- A competitive and integrated farming for a global world (CAC 2007)

Climate Change Regional Strategy, ERCC (CCAD/SICA 2010)


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