SEARCH BLOG: ENERGY
Hope from Scitzen:
"Brazilian Sugarcane Ethanol is The Most Competitive Renewable Energy Worldwide."
14 Mar, 2007 11:31 am
Interview with Jose Goldemberg, a Brazilian physicist and the current Secretary for the Environment of the State of Sao Paulo, Brazil, in which he explains the potential role of ethanol in the world energy market and the Brazilian Ethanol model.
Fear from Mongabay:
A proposed ethanol alliance that President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva is expected to forge with U.S. President George W. Bush later this week poses both opportunities and risks for the environment, a top U.N. environmental official said Monday.Reassurance from Reuters:
Achim Steiner, executive director of the United Nation's Environment Program, said growing international demand for ethanol and other biofuels on the international market threaten the Amazon rain forest if safeguards are not put in place because the world's largest remaining tropical wilderness is a target area for agriculture.
Brazil's main biofuel is ethanol made from sugarcane. While sugarcane cultivation is minimal now in the Amazon, some environmentalists fear growing demand for the fuel could push cane growers into the Amazon.
"I think at the end of the day ... it's a question of whether the Amazon is sufficiently protected and whether the expansion of the ethanol production happens in the context of government policies that try and direct that growth potential in a sustainable base,"
Brazil ethanol output won't hurt rainforest: expertBased on what has already happened in the Amazon basin, I'd say that sugarcane is not the issue. There are plenty of other actions destroying vast tracts of that ecosystem. Remember, the U.S. once had vast forests covering the eastern half of its territory.
Mon Mar 26, 2007 7:25PM EDT
By Peter Blackburn
RIO DE JANEIRO (Reuters) - Brazil has abundant farmland available to plant sugar cane to satisfy surging world demand for biofuels without damaging the environment, a leading ethanol expert said on Monday.
"There's no need to cut a single tree in the Amazon rainforest either to grow food or produce ethanol," Roberto Rodrigues, Brazilian coordinator of the Inter-American Ethanol Commission, told a workshop on agroenergy's environmental impact.
A former agriculture minister who now heads the agribusiness center of the Getulio Vargas think-tank, Rodrigues said Brazil had some 220 million hectares of livestock land.
It included 90 million ha of degraded pasture which could be used for crops with 20 million ha for sugar cane.
He said that sugar cane occupied only 6 million ha of the 62 million ha of Brazil's cultivated farmland. Roughly half the cane area is used to produce ethanol and the rest for sugar.