Perhaps rich countries do not have to choose between bread and petrol, but hundreds of millions of poor surely have to do, explains Paul Kennedy, director of the Institute of studies on international security at Yale University. In a world in search of the magic formula to maintain the current energy waste, the alternative of biofuels has made that the law of supply and demand is present as ever in the most basic diet. Those who have less, as always, are those who lose at the escalation of prices of corn, wheat or sugar cane, products preferred for this form of energy production. A challenge to the goal of the UN to eradicate hunger, since it alters the balance needed for a fair distribution of the wealth of the planet. The rise in prices will be general. We are facing the end of cheap food, according to The Economist, a cycle in which countries measured increasingly its raw materials by these produced imbalances in the market. The attraction’s most popular energy crops since farmers to abandon other crops, so the demand pressure increases on them.
So happened with soybeans in the United States. Far from cheaper, its price has soared by the rampant growth of the Asian powers, which is an essential nutrient. The imbalance will be most acute in many other crops due to the inefficiency of a way of obtaining energy that requires large areas of cultivated land. To meet the demand in Germany would have to devote the entire territory to energy crops. You can investment in these crops beneficial at first for farmers, and that this reverse in society, but it will not be equally in all countries. How to compete with substantial grants from the American Government to their crops of corn? In 2007, biofuels were one-third of these crops in the United States.
This competitive fever requires an understanding within the framework of the new geopolitics that lies ahead. Those who have everything will go forward. Those who have few resources will have a very black future, says Paul Kennedy. Even the forests are disappearing before the advance of harvests, as it is the case with part of the rainforest in Indonesia, Malaysia, parts of Africa and in Brazil. Not to mention the harmful effects of intensive agriculture that is depleted soils and subtracting surface destined to the production of food for millions of human beings. Biofuels are removing his costume between the increasing criticism towards an untenable solution. His image was well received at first in the heat of the struggle to improve the environment, but they have proved to be not as clean as they seemed. In reality, it’s speculation with great potential for imbalance. The picture is not so different from the current one, in which oil plays an important role in the international arena. The only thing that changes are the products that have between hands, which in this case are a vital sustenance. Invest more in renewable energies will alleviate the pollution but not solve the underlying problem: a demand for energy that moves faster than the pace that we solve the problems arising from this. By very clean which are solar energy or wind power, would not be sustainable to invade the territory of solar panels or windmills to meet this increasingly insatiable appetite. The key has to do with match the consumption growth to advances in efficiency to produce energy.