Edited by Yves Le Bouthillier, Annette Cowie, Paul Martin and Heather McLeod-Kilmurray
Chapter 4: Biofuels’ legal and political framework in Brazil: a critical review through a sustainable development lens
There is growing international interest in the promotion of biofuels to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from transport fuel consumption to mitigate climate warming. However, the increasing amount of land and water necessary for the agricultural production of biomass for biofuels has raised many concerns over their real benefits and positive carbon footprint. The recognition that biofuels may increase deforestation and reduce the agricultural area available for food production has turned biofuels from a solution into a complex problem. Neither the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change nor its subsequent international agreements established specific rules on how biofuels have to be produced if they are to be considered as an effective means to mitigate climate change. In spite of this, environmental and social concerns related to the increasing production and international trade of biofuels have led some states and private parties to reconsider their initial assumption that biofuels are a feasible energy alternative to reduce greenhouse emissions.
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