Germany biofuels group slams study on palm oil use in diesel fuel

05 July 2013 16:06  [Source: ICIS news]

LONDON (ICIS)--Palm oil plays a much smaller role in diesel fuel sold in Germany than claimed in a Greenpeace study this week, Germany’s biofuels industry trade group VDB said on Friday.

The group was reacting to a Greenpeace study that found that palm oil levels blended into diesel fuel sold at German petrol stations had tripled since 2011.

VDB said the study did not reflect that for technical reasons palm oil could only be blended into diesel during the summer months.

In addition, the palm oil used in Germany did not come from plantations set up after razing rain forests in countries such as Indonesia or Malaysia, VDB said.

"German and EU legislation prohibit the use of raw material from protected areas such as rain forests," the group said.

The group also said that the Greenpeace study had not taken into account the use of waste oils in biodiesel blending, and it had underplayed the role of rapeseed oil. The main raw material in biodiesel blending in 2013 in Germany is rapeseed oil – not palm oil, VDB said.

According to VDB, global palm oil production is about 50m tonnes/year, with the bulk of the palm oil used in the food industry and as raw material for chemicals and cosmetics.

By: Stefan Baumgarten
+1 713 525 2653

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