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‘Low ILUC-Risk’ as a Sustainability Standard for Biofuels in the EU

Indirect land use change (ILUC) can add significantly to biofuels’ carbon footprint, and the EU has implemented measures to limit ILUC arising from its energy policy. The paper argues that ‘low ILUC-risk’ certification could be positioned as a gold standard of biofuel sustainability, as it minimises biofuels’ impacts on food markets and on ILUC, and offers possible co-benefits through the adoption of more sustainable farming practices.

In the paper we develop policy-focussed recommendations for the low ILUC-risk framework — these are intended to boost its attractiveness and applicability to feedstock producers around the EU and beyond, and strengthen its environmental safeguards.

For instance, we discuss how the crediting methodology could manage seasonal variability in on-farm yields; the connection between low ILUC-risk and the EU Renewable Energy Directive’s ‘Annex IX’; provisions to facilitate the certification process; and more…