The EU is reportedly proposing a change to the Renewable Energy Directive that would cap crop-based biofuel production at 5% while placing more emphasis on advanced biofuel feedstocks. According to a statement made by EU Commissioner of Energy G√ľnther Oettinger, these “non-food feedstocks” include waste or agricultural residues such as straw “that are not in competition with food, nor do they require additional land” (Voegele).

I think this change may be a result of this summer’s drought that drastically the supply of corn and therefore increasing food prices and leaving people hungry. This huge crop failure has rippled throughout the entire food chain and has left a dent in the global food system. Currently, roughly 35% of the global corn crop comes from the U.S. 10% of this corn crop is mandated for biofuels production, which many are arguing is a leading cause of increased food prices and therefore increased food insecurity. Lack of food in developing countries leads to political insecurity and increased conflict. I think a strong argument could be made that if the U.S. wants to increase its national security, it should look to the E.U. as an example and consider capping its crop-based biofuel production.

-Charlotte

“Study: Biofuels Mandate Could Increase EU CO2 Emissions.” EurActiv.com. N.p., n.d. Web. 24 Sept. 2012. <http://www.euractiv.com/energy/biofuels-increase-net-co2-emissi-news-514812>.