Oil firms fail green standards

An official report has revealed that global oil companies such as BP, Total and Chevron have been unable to reach the Government's 'green' targets, by failing to test whether biofuels meet the required standards.

According to the Government's Renewable Fuels Agency (RFA) report, major oil firms have not successfully met the three goals of environmental standards, carbon savings and fuel source information.

As per regulations set out by the Government, biofuels, which are greener fuels created from crops like oilseed rape and sugar cane or used cooking oil, need to form a minor proportion of the petrol and diesel sold in the UK. This share of biofuels is also meant to go up eventually.

However, the second yearly RFA report shows that only 31% of the biofuels that went to the UK over the last year conformed to the environmental standards laid out, falling below the Government's 50% target. The amount is 20% higher on the last year however.

These standards include making sure that the production of energy crops do not result in the damage of forests, wildlife, people, or do not create air pollution, which is where a number of concerns stem from. It is believed that such farming practices might lead to deforestation, thus defeating the purpose of bringing down greenhouse gases through the use of biofuels.

The report reveals that none of the big oil companies, ranging from Shell, Esso, Petroplus to Murco, could meet the environmental regulations set out by the Government.

Copyright © Press Association 2011