Stagnant biofuels industry lamented

SENATOR Win Gatchalian is pushing for diversification of bioethanol feedstock sources and improved production processes to help bring down barriers preventing the takeoff of biofuels in the country.

Gatchalian recognized the importance of Republic Act No. 9367 or the Biofuels Act of 2006 in spurring the use of indigenous and clean energy sources in transportation and power generation.

Gatchalian however pointed out that the bioenergy industry continues to stagnate even after the law had taken effect. The Biofuels Act mandates all liquid fuels for motors and engines sold in the country to contain locally sourced biofuels.

The lawmaker vowed to champion the diversification of bioethanol feedstock sources and improved production processes and the improved processes for feedstock once the 18th Congress opens next month. He emphasized the need for research and development for sustainable feedstock supply both for bioethanol and biodiesel.

“The continued importation of biofuels goes against the very purpose of the law, which is to decrease dependence on imported fuel,” Gatchalian said. “This situation, if left unaddressed, is expected to worsen given the growing demand for bioethanol brought about by the climbing demand for gasoline.”