Discontent with the European Commission’s “State of the Energy Union” in November for not including a serious attempt to wean Europe off imported oil, Anders Fogh Rasmussen and Peder Holk Nielsen have voiced their opinions. In a recent op-ed, the Former Secretary General of NATO joined Novozymes’ CEO, highlighted why Europe’s addiction to oil is problematic, and pointed to advanced biofuels as the solution.

“We live in a fossil-fuel-driven economy, and we depend highly on unstable states to fuel it. Other regions have been in this situation before us, and have dealt with it. As things stand now, Europe is not dealing with it at all.”

Referencing successes in the US and Brazil, Rasmussen and Nielsen call for Europe to similarly reduce their reliance on foreign oil.

It’s an understandable request. Today, of every 100 litres consumed in the bloc, 90 litres are imported, with around half of all imports coming from Russia, Saudi Arabia and Nigeria. This makes the European Union extremely vulnerable to unpredictable geopolitical tensions and conflicts.

Their suggested solution is simple: Step up production of advanced biofuels to supplement and gradually replace oil imports. According to the International Council on Clean Transportation (ICCT), this plan could displace up to 16% of road transport fuel by 2030.

Advanced biofuels are readily available, and the technology is being demonstrated on a commercial scale around the world. In the words of Rasmussen and Nielsen, “This potential is within our reach.”

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Anders Kristoffersen

Public Affairs Manager at Novozymes
I’m a Public Affairs Manager leading Novozymes PA work related to bioenergy. I am passionate about biotechnology in its many forms and clean technologies.

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