Biofuels No Conflict With Food In Australia

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12th January 2010, 03:19pm - Views: 826

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12 January 2010 


The Biofuels Association of Australia today fired back at recent claims that biofuels are diverting crops away

from food sources or pushing up food prices in Australia.  

“Our ethanol and biodiesel blends come from used and waste sources in Australia so the argument of

competition against food simply does not apply” said Heather Brodie, CEO of the BAA.  “Australia’s

production of ethanol mainly comes from molasses and waste starch.  The one production facility using red

sorghum, which is a grain but not a food source, needs only 200,000 tonnes out of a crop last year of nearly

four million tonnes.  Our surplus sorghum crop is exported to Japan – surely it is valuable to use it in the

local production of a low carbon fuel which is good for the environment.”

“Using the feedlot industry’s own analysis from the Centre for International Economics (August 2005) the

possible price impact of a 700 million litre grain based ethanol industry in Australia would only be 2%” Ms

Brodie said.  

Most of the waste stream from the production of ethanol is returned to the feed lot industry as high

quality, high calorific value wet or dry distiller’s grain – sort of like very rich food for animals.  

“At the moment transportation is the third largest emitter of greenhouse gases and is responsible for more

than a quarter of the world’s emissions” Ms Brodie said.  “Ninety eight percent of the energy used in the

transportation industry still derives from fossil fuels.  Immediate reductions of emissions can be achieved

through the use of alternative fuel sources such as ethanol and biodiesel blends, without impacting on any

food products.”  

“It’s time we all started recognising that locally produced, environmentally sustainable and economically

viable transport fuels will actually be necessary in order to meet petroleum demands in the future. 

Australia has the opportunity to lead the world in the use of biofuels but at the moment we are well behind

the mature positions being taken in Europe, America, Asia and Brazil.”

The Biofuels Association of Australia Incorporated is the peak industry body representing ethanol and

biodiesel producers, feedstock suppliers, technology providers, independent and major oil companies,

equipment manufacturers, mining and construction companies and others.

Media Contact: Heather Brodie, CEO BAA, 0437 932 949

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