85% of crop-based biofuel used on UK roads is imported, new figures from Defra reveal. This is despite a 17% increase in UK-sourced biofuels being used in the nation’s vehicles between 2012-13 and 2013-14 to 332m litres.
That means 85% of crop-based biofuel used on UK roads is imported. Biofuels used in the UK in 2013-14 totalled 810m litres – with 85% coming from countries both in and outside of Europe.
Largest import from Ukraine
The largest import came from the Ukraine, which exported 138m litres of corn-derived biofuels to the UK market. Other big exporters to the UK were France (71m litres from sugar beet compared to 57m litres home-grown) and the USA (60m litres from corn). Of wheat-derived biofuels, British and French farms produced the most for the UK market, at 71m litres each.
A total of 42,000ha of UK farmland was used for biofuel production in 2014, amounting to 0.7% of the country’s arable area. A total of 787t of UK-grown crops were used for biofuel production for the road transport market in 2013-14 – an increase of 7% on the previous year.
|Total agricultural area in the UK used for bioenergy crops (thousand ha)|
|Wheat of which:||1,992||1,615|
|used for bioethanol||20||26|
|OSR of which:||756||715|
|used for biodiesel||3||8|
|Sugar beet of which:||120||117|
|used for bioethanol||10||8|
[Source: Farmers Weekly]