Minister wants debate on biofuel ethics

23-01-2007 | |

The rapid global expansion in biofuel production from agricultural feedstocks means that the world will soon need to start debating the ethics of burning food crops, according to Swedish farm minister Eskil Erlandsson.

The minister told Swedish farmers’ magazine ATL that it could soon become an
ethical issue whether it was justifiable to produce biofuels from crops when
large parts of the world’s population still cannot feed themselves or their
The balance between supply and demand has never been so delicate as
now, he pointed out. “The margins today are not that great, and we’ve seen what
the recent drought in Australia has had for effect on grain prices,” he

Biofuels committee
Erlandsson has appointed a
biofuels committee to evaluate Sweden’s capacity to produce biofuels from field
crops and forestry. The committee will include the ethical aspect in its
recommendations when it reports back in April, according to Erlandsson.
task of the committee is to find out how much biofuel crops we can produce.
Should Sweden produce only bio-crops and import our food, or should we produce
none?” Erlandsson asked rhetorically. “It is a truly global

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