Is there a need for a biofuel industry in Ireland

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The demand for a Biofuel industry

Conveyance sector

Climate alteration is an of import challenge confronting Ireland and other states with increased degrees of nursery gases such as Co2 over recent old ages the temperature of the planets earths ‘ ambiance is lifting. The effect of this increased temperature is that planetary sea degrees are lifting therefore doing an dismaying addition in deluging. It is clear that a decrease in C02 gases is needed to undertake this gyrating out of control job. In Ireland the conveyance sector contributes to over 21 % of entire national emanations ( EPA, 2010 ) .Between 1990 and 2009 the conveyance industry has been the fastest turning beginning of C02 emitants ( EPA, 2010 ) .This figure is high as at the minute the bulk of the conveyance sector is run on dodo fuels which has a high C02 emanations rate when they are combusted. The Biofuel option offers an option to the current fuel been used and has the possible to greatly cut down the C02 emanations level if implemented in the full conveyance sector. Biofuels has the possible to cut down nursery gases by about 100 % when compared with the fuels that are presently in usage e.g. petrol.Biofuels harvests can sequester C in the dirt as they grow which greatly reduces Co2 in the air. When biofuels are burnt the new workss planted to bring forth the biofuel sequester the C therefore doing it ‘s a ‘virtuous ‘ circle. The chief advantage of biofuels is that they offer a better option to the fast depleting dodo fuels.

Renewable Energy beginning Directive 2008

The renewable Energy beginning Directive 2008 proposes that the EU proposes a 20 % decrease in nursery gas emanations, the directing proposes a 5.75 % decrease by 2010 at the minute Ireland is non on path to make this mark. This directing merely sets out marks and it ‘s non mandatory to follow with. A 10 % adhering minimal mark is to be achieved by all Member States for the portion of biofuels in the overall EU conveyance gasoline and Diesel ingestion by 2020 ( Edwards Robert et Al, 2010 ) .If Ireland is to lend towards this 10 % mark the biofuel industry will hold to be introduced on a big graduated table.

Kyoto Protocol

If Ireland is to follow with the Kyoto protocol understanding to significantly cut down nursery gases the biofuel industry needs to be taken serious as by exchanging from fossil fuels to Biofuel this mark can be reached. Under the Kyoto protocol Irelands entire emanations are merely limited 62.8 million metric tons of C02 per anumn.As the minute we are 6.2 million metric tons above this figure ( EPA, 2010 ) .In Meeting the 2020 marks set Ireland will necessitate a important decrease in nursery gases in all sectors.

The conveyance industry and the energy are the chief subscribers. The pattern of firing coal to bring forth energy is a major subscriber towards nursery gases with the debut of a biofuel works that uses energy such as biomass this figure could be greatly reduced. The usage of Biofuels such as biomass will drastically cut down these emanations therefore assisting to lend to decrease in planetary heating and even more significantly avoiding the immense punishments that Ireland faces if it does non make its Kyoto protocol marks which at the minute Ireland can non afford to pay.

Dependence on other states for Fossil fuels

There is a demand for a sustainable biofuel industry in Ireland to be developed now instead than subsequently. Ireland as a state is to a great extent depended on imported dodo fuels by set uping a biofuel industry now it gives the state an option of holding an independent beginning of fuel supply alternatively of trusting on other states for the supply.

It will besides assist in covering with the expected job of long term deficit ‘s of fossil fuels such as petroleum oil which Ireland is really to a great extent depend on. At the minute oil monetary values are presently comparatively low, but the monetary value will finally lift as more economic systems begin to to the full come out of the recession and therefore demand for fuels will lift doing the monetary value to increase doing oil a dearly-won fuel, presently Ireland is able to afford to pay the monetary value of the oil but in the close hereafter as universe resources of fossil fuels deplete the monetary value of oil will make such a degree that Ireland will no longer be able to afford to pay the monetary value. The bulk of Ireland ‘s fuel supply is supplied by the U.K through under H2O pipes. If anything happened to this supply the state would be brought to a deadlock, this highlights the pressing issue that Ireland needs to turn to. In 2006 the EU estimated that if there was to be a important rise in the monetary value of oil between now and 15 old ages from now, that the security of supply benefit of biofuels produced in Europe is deserving about 11-13 cents/litre, or about a‚¬130 per toe. But this is likely over estimation but it highlights the importance that biofuels will hold in close hereafter ( Edwards Robert et Al, 2010 ) . By set uping a good Biofuel industry now Ireland will be able to get down going a partially self sufficient state in footings of fuel and it wo n’t necessitate to be so to a great extent dependent on others states for their fuel supply.

Other Benefits

As seen with the recent BP oil spill the harm that the oil did to the environing wildlife was immense. With the debut of Biofuels this hazard would be greatly reduced as the oil that comes from the Biofuels procedure is biodegradable oil which is made on land. With the debut of a biofuel industry another positive impact that it would hold is that it would bring forth employment which in rural Ireland which is so severely needed.

Incentives and Obstacles to a Biofuel industry


Harmonizing to a publication signifier the green party on the 2nd of June 2005, Ireland is dawdling majorly behind other E.U. states when it comes to the execution of supplying support or equal support to biofuel industries in Ireland. The E.U. set out the biofuels directive in 2003 which is discussed below.

E.U. Biofuels Directive 2003

This directing demands from all the member states that 2 % of the dodo fuels sold in 2005 should be replaces by biofuels and a farther portion of 5.75 % of fossil fuels sold in 2010 should be biofuels. To assist accomplish this, Sustainable Energy Authority Ireland ( SEAI ) set up a pool of Ecofys, Teagasc and the Fraenhofer Institute. This pool was to quantify the impacts of a biofuel industry in Ireland and to acknowledge the most strategic agencies of implementing the Biofuel Directive.

Harmonizing to SEAI ( 2004 ) , there are several processs which will hold a positive impact on advancing a biofuel industry in Ireland. These are as follows ;

Excise responsibility freedom

Levy / subsidy

Irish duty

EU duty

Tender system

Excise Duty Exemption

The excise responsibility freedom is where the Irish authorities will relieve all biofuels from excise responsibility “ in a manner that their cost at the pump becomes the same as that for fossil fuels ” . The chief advantage of this process is that it is already being implemented or is under consideration in other E.U. states. The freedom can be put in topographic point in a comparatively short period of clip. It has to advantage to the consumer that they will non detect any difference in the monetary value between biofuels and fossil fuels at the pumps.

However, this method comes at a disadvantage to the authorities because they are out of pocket because of the revenue enhancements lost. You would experience sorry for them. Particularly in this economic clime where the authorities is acquiring bailed out by the European Union a loss in revenue enhancements is non a welcome method because of the foregone revenue enhancement income.

Levy/ subsidy

The levy/ subsidy comprises of a separate levy being debut in analogue with excise responsibility. This money will non travel to the authorities but will instead travel to a separate independent establishment that will administer it to the biofuel manufacturers on a footing of GigaJoule of biofuel produced by each company.

Irish Duty

This is where the authorities implements an duty to each fuel marketer that a figure of biofuel certifications be redeemed by the terminal of each twelvemonth. An independent organic structure will publish certifications to biofuel manufacturers which can be freely traded within Ireland merely. A punishment will happen to the fuel Sellerss if the duty is non met each twelvemonth. This is designed to stimiulate the fuel Sellerss into make fulling the demand.

EU Duty

This is the same scenario as with the Irish duty but the certifications will be on an EU broad system so that biofuels can be imported from states with lower costs.

Tender System

This is where the authorities launches stamps for measures of biofuels, or for the sums stated by the 2005 or 2010 directive. This is to advance competition for possible biofuel bring forthing companies. This seems to be the method that has the least positive impact for the biofuel industry.

Obstacles to a Biofuel Industry

The development of a biofuel industry in Ireland has many obstructions. The chief obstructions that will be discussed in this study are as follows ;

The handiness of biofuel resources in Ireland

The cost of bring forthing biofuels

The Availability of biofuel resources in Ireland

Production of biofuels must happen on a larger graduated table for the monetary value of the fuel to diminish. The job with Ireland is that it merely does non hold the country of land to do the production of biofuels every bit feasible as it is in other states. Below is figure 2-1 taken from SEAI ( 2004 ) .

Figure 1-3 Agricultural Land Use in Ireland

The figure shows that the huge bulk of useable in Ireland land is devoted to Arable, dairying, dry ( A1 ) , Arable, sheep, dry stock ( A2 ) , Arable, dry stock ( A3 ) . I is clear to see from the figure that there is a really low country of useable land. This leads to little economic systems of graduated table for Ireland. The biofuels can be produced at a significantly lower cost if the size of the installation is big. Higher production costs in Ireland relative to other EU states will necessarily take to the importing of biofuels from these states where costs are lower with the Irish biofuels industry being uncompetitive on a planetary graduated table.

The Cost of Producing Biofuels

At the minute, biofuels are subjected to the same rate of excise responsibility as fossil fuels. The high production costs of biofuels are mostly attributed to the cost of the natural stuff used in its production. As discussed in the earlier chapter, the country available for turning the energy harvests that are the natural stuffs is non peculiarly big. This drives up the cost of the stuff as it is non richly available.

At the minute, biofuels are subjected to the same rate of excise responsibility as fossil fuels. This makes biofuels wasteful in comparing to fossil fuels as it has lower energy content and hence requires a greater volume to acquire the same sum of energy.


There is clearly a demand for a biofuel industry in Ireland. Ireland needs a biofuel industry to assist battle planetary heating. If Ireland does n’t cut down its C02 emanations now Ireland will confront immense punishments under the Kyoto understanding. As fossil fuels are running out Biofuels is a feasible option. The Biofuel industry has the possible to bring forth mass employment and aid Ireland recover from the economic downswing.

It is clear to see that a figure of inducements were outlined by the EU directive that could hold been implemented in Ireland. However, it seems that the least effectual scheme was employed which was the stamp system. The excise responsibility would hold been far more appealing to companies to get down up in the biofuel industry. It is besides really evident that the deficiency of available resources in Ireland for biofuel is a major obstruction to the growing of the industry here.