This report from the Biofuels task force of the World Energy Council reviews the debate between supporters and opponents of Biofuels, against the backdrop of rapidly increasing energy demand.
Skyrocketing prices of crude oil in the middle of the first decade of the 21st century accompanied by rising prices for food focused political and public attention on the role of biofuels. On the one hand, biofuels were considered as a potential automotive fuel with a bright future, on the other hand, biofuels were accused of competing with food production for land. The truth must lie somewhere in-between and is strongly dependent on the individual circumstance in different countries and regions. As food and energy are closely interconnected and often compete with each other for other resources, such as water, the World Energy Council – following numerous requests of its Member Committees – decided to undertake an independent assessment of biofuels policies, technologies and standards.