Ireland imports millions of litres of used cooking oil to meet EU

first_imgAN TAISCE HAS flagged serious concerns over the European Union’s biofuel policy, branding it as ‘unsustainable’.The National Trust said that under current EU policy, 70 million hectares – an area the size of Sweden and Poland combined – will be needed to grow enough materials to reach targets set.It has also noted Ireland’s reliance on imported used cooking oil (UCO) as a biofuel source.UCO currently makes up 50% of all fuel on the Irish market, and at present 9.5 million litres, roughly 13% the total amount used, is produced in Ireland, while 39% is imported from Spain, and 20% from the United States.“A far cry”Taking into account other sources of biofuel such as sugar beet and tallow, we import 84% of our biofuel, “a far cry from self-sufficiency” An Taisce said.The organisation called this a “failure of EU biofuels policy to meet one of its key aims, namely, to boost self-sufficiency in terms of transport fuels”.“In terms of reducing emissions most biofuels remain very much unproven”, policy director at An Taisce James Nix said, adding that research has shown that biofuels are not as efficient at reducing emissions as first thought.The 2009 Renewable Energy Directive sets all Member States a binding target for use of biofuels in the transport sector of at least 10% of all energy used“The scheme works by obligating road transport fuel suppliers to bring a certain amount of biofuel, currently 6% by volume of total transport fuel sales, to the market,” Minister Pat Rabbitte has explained.Read: We should be using more seaweed to power things, MEPs say >More: 500 per cent rise in use of biofuel since 2007 >last_img