Download Agrofuels: Big Profits, Ruined Lives and Ecological by Francois Houtart PDF

By Francois Houtart

Since they have been heralded as a key weapon within the struggle opposed to weather switch, agrofuels were criticised seriously for doing extra damage than strong because of deforestation and stealing agricultural land necessary to farmers within the constructing international. This ebook asks even if there's anywhere for agrofuels in a low-carbon future.

François Houtart argues that the golf green strength of agrofuels has been wasted by means of companies that placed gains above environmental safeguard. This has ended in the absurd scenario the place an power resource that are meant to be sustainable really raises human and ecological harm, easily as a result of profit-maximising judgements of capitalists instead of a flaw within the notion of agrofuels.

Students of improvement reviews and environmental economics will locate that this booklet bargains an attractive new standpoint at the way forward for strength.

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Additional resources for Agrofuels: Big Profits, Ruined Lives and Ecological Destruction

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The world is currently undergoing a double crisis that adds to the systemic upheaval of contemporary capitalism and, not unconnected to the latter, the energy crisis, which started with the oil shock, and the climate crisis which became visible at the beginning of the 1970s, although a general awareness of the issue did not develop before the outset of the twenty-first century. The Energy Crisis and Non-renewable Energy Sources The energy crisis arises from the foreseeable end of a cycle, that of oil, gas and coal, which, furthermore, has considerably increased greenhouse emissions, a major cause of climate deterioration.

In the UK, which has the oldest nuclear complex in Europe, the 14 plants in use supply 20 per cent of the electricity, but nine of them have to be closed down before 2015. In terms of immediate efficiency, nuclear energy has numerous advantages. Thus, 25 kilograms of uranium produce 1 gigawatt (GW) of electricity which would otherwise use, in a thermal plant, 2,700 tonnes of coal. 14 The increasing cost of oil has meant that the cry of the ecologists to halt nuclear energy is diminishing. Not only is France continuing to sell its reactors around the world, but the UK decided, at the beginning of 2008, to reconsider its policy, and so has Finland and Japan.

Only Germany wonders what decisions to take in this field. But it should not be forgotten that uranium is not renewable and that its reserves are also diminishing. All its resources together would meet world energy requirements for just one and a half years, if it were the only energy source. It is true that the technology has been evolving. In 2005 France launched the third-generation pressurized water reactor (PWR) and it is preparing a fourth generation reactor for mid-century, particularly plants using the rapid neutron capture process and 238 isotopes, the reserves of which are calculated to last thousands of years.

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