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RFA study on impacts of biofuels crops published

Commissioned by the UK Renewable Fuels Agency (RFA), Proforest has carried out research into the environmental, social and economic sustainability aspects of agricultural cultivation models and methods used to produce key biofuels for the UK market.

The study, part of the RFA research programme into the impacts of the Renewable Transport Fuel Obligation (RTFO), focused on 9 country/crop combinations that have been key sources for UK biofuels in the first 21 months of the RTFO. These were oilseed rape from the UK, Germany and France; soy from Argentina and the US; oil palm from Malaysia and Indonesia, sugarbeet from the UK and sugarcane from Brazil. 

The aim of the study is to provide UK biofuel stakeholders information on how the scale of farming operations and the range of agricultural practices used to produce these crops affect the environmental and social sustainability of UK biofuels. The research included a review of publicly available documents and scientific literature as well as interviews with experts working in the agricultural sector. The study provides biofuels suppliers with information about the implications of their sourcing choices and potential opportunities to select more sustainable biofuels crops.

The report is available on the RFA website and can also be downloaded via the link on the right hand side of this page.

Published 11.11.2010