Biodiesel and other “green” fuels are obliterating the world’s rainforests
07/08/2021 // Ethan Huff // Views

Europe has long boasted of being a world leader in the use of "green" biofuels, which come from plants as opposed to oil of fossil origin. The only problem is that rainforests the size of The Netherlands have had to be plowed over in order to produce enough of it for everyday use.

A recent study looked at the effects of the European Union's infamous "green fuel" laws, which were first enacted back in 2010. It revealed that in order to produce enough biofuel to power Europe, massive swaths of pristine South American and Asian rainforests have had to be obliterated.

In their place, giant palm and soy plantations now exist, producing a steady supply of "clean" energy for our neighbors across the pond. It makes no sense, of course, but not much in the "green" energy industry does if you really take a closer look at it.

Europe's Renewable Energy Directive (RED) demanded that EU member nations achieve a 10 percent renewable energy target by the year 2020. Over the past 10 years since it was enacted, roughly four million hectares of forests have had to be plowed and replaced with biofuel plantations in order to meet this goal.

In the process, 10 percent of the world's last remaining orangutan habitats are now gone. And who even knows how many other endangered animal species are now on the verge of, or completely, extinct thanks to the "green" energy push?

"[Ten] years of this 'green' fuels law and what have we got to show for it? Rampant deforestation, habitats wiped out and worse emissions than if we had used polluting diesel instead," notes Transportation & Environment (T&E) director Laura Buffet, who helped lead the study.


"A policy that was supposed to save the planet is actually trashing it. We cannot afford another decade of this failed policy. We need to break the biofuels monopoly in renewable transport and put electricity at the centre of the RED instead."

Since 2010, Europe has burned nearly 40 million tons of dirty palm, soy biodiesel

Over the past decade, Europe is estimated to have burned through more than 39 million tons of biodiesel derived just from palm and soy – there are many other sources of biodiesel as well.

Rapeseed (canola) is another source of biodiesel that like palm and soy requires large chunks of land in order to produce. Much of this land is being taken from virgin South American rainforests, which are being systematically destroyed to produce "clean," "green" energy.

Europe is also producing biodiesel on its own land from hydrotreated vegetable oil, also known as HVO, which requires significantly more vegetable oil than traditional methods. The continent's capacity to produce HVO is expected to double within the next five years.

Buffet and her co-authors have issued a plea for Europe to immediately halt any further destruction of native rainforests, as well as completely phase out the use of palm oil as a source of biodiesel.

Biofuel is anti-green in every sense as it is destroying the planet, creating massive habitat loss and, ironically, enough producing far more carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions than regular fossil fuels.

"Crop biofuels are not the solution for Europe's transport and they never will be," Buffet warns.

As for the declining orangutan populations, their last remaining refuges are in Indonesia and Malaysia, where at least 1.1 million hectares of land have already been converted to palm plantations for biofuel. The current population of orangutans is estimated to be around 65,000, with a population density of 0.45 to 0.76 individuals per square kilometer of land.

More related news about the fraud of so-called "green" energy can be found at

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