03 November 2009 12:39 [Source: ICIS news]
PARIS (ICIS news)--The ethanol industry will continue to struggle with its image problem and the sector will have a tough time winning the sustainability debate, according to commodities information service FO Licht on Tuesday.
“The biofuel industry needs to defend its position very aggressively,” said FO Licht managing director Christoph Berg at the opening of the World Ethanol 2009 conference in ?xml:namespace>
Controversy surrounding the sustainability of ethanol has brewed over claims that biofuels can do more harm than good because of the impact its production process can have on the environment.
The ethanol industry argues those claims are based on faulty, or biased, science, which it claims unfairly penalises biofuels and holds fossil fuels to different standards.
Sustainability may prove to be a harder nut to crack than the food-versus-fuel controversy, Berg said, referring to charges that increased biofuels production has driven up food prices and could lead to global hunger.
The long-term development of the ethanol industry depends on the outcome of the latest debate, the official said.
“It is a make-or-break thing,” said Robert Vierhout, secretary general of the European Bioethanol Fuel Association (eBIO).
FO Licht’s World Ethanol 2009 conference opened on Tuesday and will close on 5 November.
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