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NORAD asked to reconsider its funding of Transport & Environment

NORAD asked to reconsider its funding of Transport & Environment
Twenty-three associations representing agriculture, bioenergy, biofuels, biogas, and oilseed processing industries in Germany, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, and Sweden, have signed an open letter to the Norwegian Agency for Development Cooperation (NORAD) urging the agency to reconsider its funding of Transport & Environment.

In an open letter, associations representing the EU renewable energy and agriculture industries ask the Norwegian Agency for Development Cooperation (NORAD) to reconsider its support to the non-governmental organization Transport & Environment (T&E), which, the signatories say, has led targeted and misleading campaigns against the use of biomass and sustainable liquid biofuels.

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Twenty-three associations representing the bioenergy, biofuels, and oilseed processing industries havesigned an open letter to NORAD– one of the main funders of T&E – urging the agency to reconsider the use of Norwegian taxpayers’ money.

NORAD states that its aim is to promote initiatives that reduce the impact of climate change.

However, we are concerned that NORAD, an agency funded by Norwegian taxpayers, supports T&E, an organization that attempts to discredit renewable energy sources such as biofuels and biomass that are important for the EU’s climate change policy and energy independence, the letter states.

According to the signatories, the funding NORAD provides enables T&E to lobby directly against adopted EU policies, as EU lawmakers have repeatedly confirmed their support for the use of sustainable biofuels to displace fossil fuels.

Publiclyavailable data on T&Eshows that NORAD allocates NOK 9 million (approximately EUR 820 000) annually to fund T&E for the period from 2021 to 2025, making NORAD one of the main funders of T&E.

This comes on top ofother donors such asthe European Commission or the German Ministry of Environment.

According to the signatories, T&E seeks to discredit the use of sustainable liquid biofuel in the transport sector, ignoring the scientifically proven benefits of biofuel in reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in the transport sector and in achieving decarbonization targets.

Worryingly, T&E aggressively promotes e-mobility as the only alternative to fossil fuels in the transport sector and calls for the abandonment of other renewable fuels from now on. T&E should be aware that, since the EU transport market is currently dominated by cars with internal combustion engines, abandoning biofuels would only increase the use of fossil fuels in the EU, the signatories point out.

The letter also expresses concern over “primary woody biomass” and that some environmental NGOs also advocate for the non-recognition of primary wood, biomass, as a renewable resource thereby supporting the use of fossil fuels in the heating sector.

终极目标的非政府组织积极support this position is the exclusion of biomass from the list of renewable energy sources from 2030. This would equate biomass with the burning of fossil fuels, essentially ruining the biomass sector, an important supplier of heat in many Northern and Eastern European countries. It is important to emphasize that replacing biomass with electric heat pumps in the heat sector is not possible – the only alternative is natural gas. The same is true for biofuels – they are unlikely to be replaced by electric vehicles in the medium term. On the contrary, a reduction in the use of biofuels would lead to a significant increase in the share of petroleum fuels in the transport sector, the letter states.

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