Climate Change

Help us take action against climate change…

Climate change is one of the biggest threats facing our planet. Burning coal, oil and gas, but also intensive agriculture or cutting forests pollute the atmosphere with greenhouse gases that heat up the planet.

The good news is that all we need to save the climate is in our hands.

 

 

Friends of the Earth, Malta seeks to influence government to make changes in policies in favour of people and planet
Our next challenge is to lobby the Maltese government to commit to renewable energy and energy efficiency as a tangible means not only to meet Malta’s international emission targets but to ensure a healthier planet and a better way of life for future generations
 
… join our campaign and support Friends of the Earth
 
To prevent the most dangerous consequences of climate change it is necessary to dramatically reduce greenhouse gas emissions over the coming years. Friends of the Earth believes that this can be met through a combination of cutting demand, using energy more efficiently, through the development of renewable energy sources and also by developing a more sustainable and efficient transport system. Others, such as the EU and the car and biotechnology industries, however, are pushing for the increased use of plant-based as an alternative to fossil fuels.

Agrofuels are produced by using biomass (material from plants or trees) to make liquid fuel (biodiesel and bioethanol). Their use is not new but has recently become popular again through the joint challenge of reducing greenhouse gas emissions and securing energy supply. There is a special interest in developing liquid fuels from plants such as palm, soy and sugar cane, which can be burnt in power stations or used as an alternative transport fuel to petrol and diesel. The use of crops such as maize and agricultural waste to produce biogas is also becoming popular.

The production of agrofuels has potentially far-reaching social and environmental impacts, and raises urgent questions about whether they are an effective or economical way of helping to combat climate change. Their rapid development and promotion has resulted in a number of high level warnings about their global implications for the environment, food security and economy.

Large-scale agricultural practices deplete soils, contaminate water supplies, and are vulnerable to pests and disease when single species of crops (monocultures) are grown in large fields. The widespread use of pesticides, manufactured using fossil fuels, is also contributing to the cancer epidemic wreaking havoc on our communities. Current agricultural practices also require non-renewable resources and utilize vast distribution networks that are very high in resource demand.

In some areas, such as Indonesia and Malaysia, entire forests are being decimated to grow biofuel crops. The plant life destroyed in this process releases huge amounts of carbon dioxide as the dead trees and undergrowth decompose, exacerbating the problem they are meant to address.

Many crops also need high quantities of water. For some regions water scarcity is already a major problem and farmers in arid areas may be encouraged to turn to more thirsty crops such as maize or sugar beet to meet the demand for agrofuels.

A far safer and reliable method of reducing greenhouse gases from the transport sector would be to reduce our energy demands by cutting demand, wastage and massively improving energy efficiency. Friends of the Earth is urging the EU and national governments to introduce laws that lead to year-on-year reductions of greenhouse gases. This will necessitate developing a more sustainable transport system and forcing car manufactures to improve the efficiency of their vehicles through legally-binding targets for CO2 emissions.

Subcategories

Go to top