Europeans reject burning palm oil for fuel

Europeans reject burning palm oil for fuel

According to a survey, only 18% of Europeans know that they use biodiesel regularly.More than a dozen environmental organizations join forces to launch the European campaign #NotInMyTank (# NoEnMiDepósito in Spain) against palm oil biodiesel.

These organizations require the European Commission to exclude this biofuel as a green fuel in the European Union regulations.

The vast majority of the European population does not know that the diesel with which they fill their tanks contains up to 7% biodiesel, often made from palm oil. According to a survey carried out by Ipsos, 82% of the European citizens surveyed are not aware that diesel contains palm oil. When asked if they would agree to measures to end policies to support and subsidize economic biodiesel from palm oil in Europe, 69% of those surveyed supported the idea, while only 14% were against and 16% did not respond. These responses are in line with the decision of the European Parliament and many Member States to end the use of palm biodiesel.

Despite widespread ignorance, in 2017 51% of the palm oil used in Europe ended up in car and truck warehouses; making drivers the main - albeit unaware - palm oil consumers in Europe.

The ball is in the court of the European Commission, which has until February 1, 2019 to publish a delegated act that establishes the scientific criteria for the phase-out of palm oil in diesel.

The expansion of palm oil to make biodiesel for transport in Europe is causing rapid and virulent deforestation of large areas of virgin forest and the drainage of peatlands (a type of wetland of great environmental value) for subsequent cultivation with oil palm. Due to this change in land use, palm oil biodiesel causes three times more Greenhouse Gas (GHG) emissions than fossil fuels and, therefore, a strong impact on climate change. Furthermore, these crops have a strong social, economic and environmental impact.

According to Rosalía Soley, coordinator of the campaign on palm oil biodiesel at Ecologistas en Acción by Ecologistas en Acción, “burning palm oil in cars and trucks to achieve climate goals is absurd. In Spain, 90% of the biodiesel produced is from palm. This has to change very soon ”.

Cecilia Sánchez, promoter of the campaign, adds that “the European Commission should not only see this as a legal obligation, but also as a unique opportunity to demonstrate that the EU is not alien to what the vast majority of Europeans want, just before the EU elections ”.

An international coalition of environmental organizations, among which is Ecologistas en Acción, today launched the #NotInMyTank campaign (# NoEnMiDepósito in Spain) with a citizen petition, through the SumOfUs platform, to urge the European Commission to carry out the elimination phasing out of palm oil into diesel.

The campaign comprises a series of public actions and will culminate in a day of action with mobilizations in different European capitals. These street actions are intended to convince policy makers of the need to prevent the extinction of seriously threatened species such as orangutans as a result of the disappearance of the tropical forests.

Request # NoEnMiDposósito: https://www.sumofus.org/no-mas-aceite-de-palma-en-mi-deposito

More information:

Rosalía Soley (coordinator of Ecologistas en Acción's palm oil biodiesel campaign): 611 401 780
Cecilia Sánchez (facilitator of the Ecologistas en Acción palm oil biodiesel campaign): 659 946 667

Roberto Herreros Press
Confederation of Ecologists in Action
915 31 27 39 / 617 02 64 32

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