Process Management

News last update:6 Aug 2012

EU subsidies for biofuel hit limit

The European Commission said that it has reached its annual limit to support farmers in growing biofuel crops.

EU Agriculture Commissioner Mariann Fischer Boel said that the subsidies have been very useful in stimulating the European biofuels sector, but she questions if they are still needed.

To encourage farmers to grow crops such as bright yellow rapeseed, the EU agreed four years ago to pay subsidies for up to 5 million acres (2 million hectares) of European farmland - or $63.90 per hectare. But farmers asked for more this year - 2.8 million hectares (7 million acres).

This will mean the EU will spend its entire biofuel subsidy budget of $128 million (€90 million) this year for the first time. Because the total applications are over the limit, farmers will only get payments for 70% of the land they applied for, EU agricultural experts said. When the subsidy scheme started in 2004, only 770,000 acres were planted with biofuels


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