As a visitor drives across the plains of the department of Valle del Cauca in southwestern Colombia, green carpets dominate the view: sugarcane fields that have been here since the area got its name.
Argentina, historically an agricultural powerhouse, has become a major producer of biofuels in recent years. However, this South American country is now moving backwards in the use of this oil substitute in transportation, a decision in which economics weighed heavily and environmental concerns have been ignored.
Ecuador has decided to move towards a bioeconomy-based development model, “which must be sustainable,” because otherwise "the remedy could be worse than the disease," said the country’s Environment Minister Tarsicio Granizo, who is spearheading this innovative approach.
The Argentine biodiesel industry, which in the last 10 years has become one of the most powerful in the world, has an uncertain future, faced with protectionist measures in the United States and Europe and doubts in the international scenario about the environmental impact of these fuels based on agricultural products.
Investing in a low carbon infrastructure, particularly renewable energy, is key to addressing climate change. The really big investment challenges are in the developing world where access to modern energy services is far below what is needed to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals; indeed, almost two billion people still lack access to electricity.
Driven by solar and wind, world investments in renewable energy reversed a two-year dip last year, brushing aside the challenge from sharply lower oil prices and registering a 17 percent leap over the previous year to stand at 270 billion dollars.
Food price rises as far back as 2008 are believed to be the partial culprits behind the instability plaguing Arab countries and they have become increasingly aware of the importance of securing food needs through an international strategy of land grabs which are often detrimental to local populations.
In an unexpected move, European parliamentarians have approved a new biofuel regulation that will take emissions from indirect land use change into account. The new text allows the biofuel sector to expand, sending a clear signal to world food markets and jeopardising food security for the world's poorest.
With its abundant natural resources, productive capacity and rising investment, Latin America looks set to become of the main suppliers to meet the growing, diverse and increasingly sophisticated global demand for food.
With less than three years before a 2015 deadline, the developing world is largely expected to miss one of the U.N.'s key Millennium Development Goals (MDGs): halving the number of people living in extreme poverty and hunger.
The rush for biofuels in the United States has seen farmers converting the United States' prairie lands to farms at rates comparable with deforestation levels in Brazil, Malaysia and Indonesia – rates not seen here since the Dust Bowl of the 1930s.
Following a promising start, Brazil's dream of positioning ethanol in the global market on an equal standing with petroleum-based fuels is hindered by new and old challenges.
New biofuel requirements proposed by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) are being met with concern by a spectrum of interest groups from environmentalists to the oil industry, with some warning that a gap between the proposal and existing law could force the government to draw on food-based alternative fuels.
When my children were born it was a clear commitment: all clothing would have to carry the “organic” seal. It was an expression of a lifestyle, a commitment to the Earth.
Reversing attempts to eliminate the U.S. military’s advanced biofuels programme, both houses of Congress on Tuesday approved major legislation that now presents no obstacles to broad-reaching Defence Department plans to mainstream and spread the use of alternative fuels throughout its operations.
Rising corn prices in the United States brought about by biofuel mandates have cost developing countries 6.6 billion dollars over the past six years, according to new research released here on Wednesday.
The European Commission has announced it will limit the amount of crop-based biofuels used in transport, but its newly proposed measures are not nearly enough to curb the disastrous impact of the EU's biofuel policy around the world. Its effects will only worsen, activists say.