Sustainable alternative to 'foodfuels' is already there

23.04.2013, News

This was one of the central messages from the director of BioRefining Alliance, Anne Grete Holmsgaard on Friday the 19th of April where she held a speech at Maabjerg BioEnergy when ActionAid Denmark's cycling campaign Tour de Future stopped by.


This month under the headline 'Stop foodfuels - Food are for stomachs' ActionAid Denmark (MS) is doing a campaign tour on bike with the message to stop the production of first generation biofuels, which typically are made from food crops.

On Friday, the campaign on bike - Tour de Future - reached Maabjerg BioEnergy near Holstebro, where the director of BioRefining Alliance, Anne Grete Holmsgaard, and approximately 100 young people were invited.

The increasing global demand for biofuels has according to MS made speculators taking over land areas in third world countries in order to grow food crops for biofuels rather than for food and that without informing the locals about the impact of this land acquisition. A practice called land theft.

This problem has given biofuels in general a bad reputation, but the reality is far more nuanced:

- It is not enough just to criticize biofuels in general terms. There is a big difference between biofuels and it is crucial to highlight that there is a real and sustainable alternative to the 'foodfuels'. And this alternative is biofuel made from residues and by-products - the so-called 2 generation biofuels, the director of BioRefining Alliance, Anne Grete Holmsgaard, told the crowd during her presentation at Maabjerg BioEnergy.

In Maabjerg the project Maabjerg Energy Concept will produce bioethanol based on residues from food crops, namely straw.

- Basically this is about, how we use our farm land. Our farm land can give a much higher yield than it does today - both in Denmark and in Africa. And at the same time we can use the yield in an intelligent and sustainable way so there will be enough biomass for both food, energy and materials, Anne Grete Holmsgaard said. 

You can see more pictures from the visit here