Biofuels in the Transport Sector from the Law Perspective
Among the environmental challenges, which humanity is facing today, there are the threat of global climate change, unsatisfactory air quality, – especially in large cities, – and the fact that the resources of fossil fuels are finite. Biofuels have long been at the top of the political and scientific agenda as a possible solution to all the three challenges.
Not everything is clear about biofuels. The production costs of biofuels are still higher than those of traditional fossil fuels: without subsidies biofuels are not competitive. The environmental impact of biofuels has also been questioned, for example the need for land and water, which probably would not be enough for both biofuels and agricultural crops.
Much research on biofuels, primarily of a technical character, is conducted all over the globe. It has become obvious that there is not much legislation either internationally or nationally on the sustainable production and trade in biofuels. Moreover, there is no such a legally defined term – “sustainably produced biofuels”.
The present project is a timely contribution to the research of the law of biofuels. It will discuss three central questions:
• What legislation on the production and trade in biofuels in the transport sector do we have in the EC, Sweden, and the USA (possibly some other country, which is internationally viewed as a good example of producing and trading in biofuels)? • To what extent does this legislation promote respectively restrain the sustainable production and trade in biofuels in the transport sector? • What can be possibly suggested, so that the legislation would better satisfy its environmental goal, i.e. the promotion of the sustainable production and trade in biofuels in the transport sector?
The purpose of the project is to analyze in what respect the chosen legal systems promote respectively restrain the sustainable production and trade in biofuels in the transport sector, as well as to discuss the development of possibly successful legal strategies.
The research will be primarily focused on the EC level, and the national level of Sweden and the USA. The possibility to analyze legal experience of another country, which goes forward in the sphere of biofuels will also be considered. I intend to make an inventory of, and analyze promising legal constructions on planning and permitting procedures for the sustainable production of biofuels aimed as fuels for motor vehicles. An analysis of regulations and restrictions on trade in such fuels, as well as a discussion whether these regulations are of a sustainable character will be another aspect of my work. The ambition is to identify and analyze efficient solutions and obstacles that have been developed within the frames of different legal systems. As a result, it will be possible to make suggestions for the further sustainable development of the EC and Swedish legislation in this field.
Evgenia Pavlovskaia. "Biofuels in the Transport Sector from the Law Perspective" 2013
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