back to article Royal Society: UK gov needs to grow a biofuels policy

The British government must set policies to ensure that the current drive towards biofuels does not make a bad situation even worse. Fuels derived from crops like palm oil have been hailed as a silver bullet for global warming and reliance on oil, but the Royal Society warns that unless proper policies are created biofuels …


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  1. Nick Rutland

    ... and the US anglr

    I can't help thinking that history will judge G W Bush on two massive errors:

    1) Badly thought-out and worse executed invasion of Iraq

    2) Ill-advised subsidy of corn ethanol for US producers

    The discussion will be which of these was the worse

  2. Michael Compton

    ACME Pragmatic solutions :)

    Re: Ill-advised subsidy of corn ethanol for US producers

    Nothing new the US has pandered to the large US farmers lobbying group on a number of occasions.

    I have the solution to the transport C02 stuff; rip out all the safety crap that has been put in to the cars over the years, these are the main reason the wieght of cars has steadly increase and has negated any advances in engine efficency. This also has the added bonus of removing human beings, which lets face it have large carbon footprints over a life time.

    Have a nice day and drive safe :)

  3. Leigh Smith

    Bad idea.

    "The British government must set policies to ensure that the current drive towards biofuels does not make a bad situation even worse."

    If they stick their oar in they are guaranteed to make a bad situation worse. Probably best that they don't get involved.

  4. Mark Thomas

    Carbon Neutral

    "...and that such an assessment should look at the complete production cycle to see whether or not they are carbon neutral."

    Perhaps they should do the same for the fossil fuels that are being replaced?

  5. leslie

    New cars, you can keep em.

    Perhaps the gvmnt should stop trying to get old inefficient cars off the road, compare the mpg of my 10 year old car at an actual 44mpg to a new one 'quoted' at 50mpg, yes the new one is slightly better, but what was the footprint of building it to save that 10%, shipping it, getting it to sale....

    moreover, my car can run on any old fuel, hell it even runs on its own waste engine oil after oil change time, not to mention old chip fat, used paint thinners, vegatable oil and the 'official' bio fuels, show me a new one that you can do that with and not worry, hell most modern diesel's if you forget and put a bit of petrol in them they need a tow and a major repair! (fact, brother in law did it, had to have tank drained, and yes is 'contaminated' fuel went into my tank!)

  6. michael

    sola powered

    tractors and refinerays are the way forward

  7. Andy

    Well FUD me!

    Oh, heck, I'm gonna get me one of those nuke-reactors, looks

    like the cleanest option out there! Yeee-Har!

  8. Anonymous Coward
    IT Angle

    Modern fuel efficiency.

    If a modern car is quoted to do 50mpg you can bet in reality it'll be a lot less.

    In our house we have 2 cars - one is supposed to achieve 52mpg and the other 62mpg. In reality the 52mpg one achieves 42mpg and the 62mpg one achieves around 48mpg - even on a good run they don't get close to the quoted figure.

    Let the traffic flow freely and the total amount of fuel used will decrease - meaning less emissions overall.

    Oh, and stop buying new cars every couple of years too.

  9. Slaine

    The UK government...

    ... needs to attract people with an IQ higher than 75.

    ... needs to ban the idea of "career MPs"

    ... needs to consult with and act on the information gleened from scientists BEFORE writing long term policies

    Ah, well, at least the wrong lizard didn't get in. Mmmm Snakeskin jacket.

  10. Arnold Lieberman

    Re: sola powered

    "refinerays": Sounds scary to me!

  11. Terry de Winne


    This is absolute rubbish and demonstrates total ignorance, both of the subject and the RTFO legislation. We have spent the past 18 months considering both the sustainability and carbon savings of this move to replace at least some of the unsustainable transport fuel that is being used.

    Nobody - nowhere - has claimed that biofuels are the 'silver bullet' that will keep society mobile. Globally, they can supply only 10% of the energy required, even at todays rate of consumption.

    What would the Royal Society advocate in lieu of diminishing oil supplies? No response is anticipated, same as World Wildlife Fund, Greenpeace and other alleged environmental organisations. George Monbiot included!

    'Biofuels ... may actually damage the environment' is not a scientific analysis, but an ill-informed subjective view - I expect more from supposed scientists.

    Terry de Winne

    Allied Biodiesel Industries (UK)

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