Biofuels driving hunger
Jan 23, 2013
Bishop Hill in Energy: biofuels

The If Campaign, a new campaign by a bunch of NGOs, has been launched to tackle world hunger, although closer examination of their aims suggests other agendas too:

The group is calling for more aid to be targeted towards those most at risk of hunger and curbs on “tax dodging” by companies operating in the developing world.

Other targets include the rise of biofuels, which it argues lies behind a series of legal “land grabs” which have swept poor farmers, many of them women, aside.

In its first report, published today, the group claims that crops burned as biofuels in the UK alone would be enough to feed 10 million people a year.

I'm not quite sure what taxes have to do with hunger, but the focus on biofuels is of course very welcome. Strangely our friend Bob Ward seems to disagree. When I pointed out that greens' campaigns against GM crops and for biofuels were a major factor in world hunger, he responded:

your hatred of environmentalists is plain, but it is ridiculous to claim they are the main cause of hunger.

Leaving aside the normal Wardian misquoting ("major" for "main"), this seems like remarkably weak ground on which to take a stand. That greens have overwhelmingly opposed GM seems indisputable. That many have in the past argued for the use of biofuels is also plainly true (see post earlier today). That's all there is to it.

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