The European Ambassador to Indonesia, Vincent Guerend, is stressing that a vote of the European Parliament on the revising of the Renewable Energy Directive (RED) did not mean that the European Union has adopted a final decision but that it was only one step in a complex legislative procedure.
ILLUSTRATION. Maze corn and oil palm derived biofuel in test tubes.
“The vote of the European Parliament is a step in a complex legislative procedure. It aims at progressively replacing food-based biofuels by more advanced ones for the purpose of accounting progress towards our domestic renewable energy targets,” Guerend said in a release sent to the Palm Scribe on Monday (22/1/2018).
On 17 January 2018, European Parliament voted on the revision of the Renewable Energy Directive (RED). The EU directive said that he contribution from biofuels and bioliquids produced from palm oil shall be zero from 2021 onward.
The vote of the European Parliament is not the EU final position, Guerend said. The EU market remains open to palm oil as shown by the increase of bilateral trade between the European Union and Indonesia, of more than 30 percent in 2017, the ambassador pointed out,
Palm oil has been singled out by the European Parliament as having a major impact on greenhouse emissions and deforestation. The European Parliament in April last year a resolution on palm oil and deforestation of rainforests.
The resolution backed a call for greater vetting of palm and other vegetable oils used in biofuels to prevent the European Union’s renewable transport targets for post-2020 to lead to deforestation.
The resolution has been strongly protested by major palm oil producing countries, including Indonesia and Malaysia which supplies about 85 percent of the market.
Guerend said in the release that work will continue towards achieving an agreement with no discrimination among biofuels, as proposed by the European Commission and supported by the Council of Ministers.