At COP 28, Erasmo Carlos Battistella defends biofuels as the best short-term solution for an efficient energy transition
President of Be8 participates in COP28 to reiterate this message and boost the sector that is so important for the moment of urgency of the climate crisis, in the face of continuous environmental challenges and extreme weather events around the world
Together with the delegations of the governments of Paraguay and Brazil, Erasmo Carlos Battistella, President of Be8 (a leading national company in biodiesel production) and director of the Board of Directors of the Association of Biofuel Producers of Brazil (APROBIO), has been carrying the biofuel flag for five days in high-level meetings with authorities in Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates. Today he is present at the 28th United Nations Conference of the Parties (COP28) on Climate Change (UNFCCC), which takes place in Dubai until December 12th, 2023.
"There are two fronts: opening new markets for our products abroad and bringing green financing resources to our investments in South America," Battistella said. "The development of the role of biofuels in the decarbonization process is totally related to the mobilization of governments, international organizations and many sectors that need to accelerate the energy transition in their businesses."
During this period, Battistella met with the Minister of Investment of Saudi Arabia, Eng. Khalid bin Abdulaziz Al-Falih, accompanied by the Minister of Industry and Trade of Paraguay, Javier Gimenez Garcia de Zúñiga and the Minister of Trade, Dr. Majid Alkassabi. In Dubai, he met with the Minister of State for Trade of the United Arab Emirates, Dr. Thani Al Zeyoudi. Together with other Brazilian companies and the Brazilian Trade and Investment Promotion Agency (ApexBrasil), he participated in the roundtable between Brazil and Saudi Arabia.
There was no lack of time to defend the use of biofuels for Formula 1 races, and other access categories, with the president of the International Automobile Federation (FIA), Mohammed bin Sulayem. He said that he sees certified biofuels positively and that he sees their use in the future as very promising, not only in vehicles, but in the logistics of GPs.
Biodiesel, a ready-made and effective solution
"Much has been said about electric vehicles, hydrogen and other technological routes with all their high investment impact for the transition and, for a long time, biodiesel has been ready to fulfill its function in the decarbonization process," Battistella points out. "There is no doubt that biofuels are, today, the best cost-benefit solution for countries and companies to meet their decarbonization goals in the short term," he said.
For Battistella, "sustainable finance plays an important role in channeling resources into social, environmental and governance development projects (as part of the ESG concept). They ensure compliance with decarbonization goals and, consequently, mitigate the risks of economic disruptions, such as environmental catastrophes and losses in agricultural production resulting from global warming."
The businessman's expectation is that Brazil will play a leading role in clean energy during COP28 to launch a macro and transversal energy transition program, with the aim of reinforcing the country's position in this new moment in global energy, transforming the event into a platform for attracting investments to this strategic sector of the country.
Another challenge proposed by Battistella is the promotion of Public Policies in South American countries to stimulate the use of biofuels for the energy transition, considering the total exemption from taxation of renewable energies produced in the region and exported. "We need to create synergies and align regional regulatory strategies to increase the use of biofuels in the region, with emphasis on investments in SAF (aviation biokerosone)," he explains.
According to the businessman, the entities representing the biofuels sector in Argentina, Brazil, Colombia, Paraguay and Uruguay have already expressed firm conviction that it is essential that all governments comprehensively promote the energy transition strategy for the development of the sector, both for vehicular transport and for air, river and sea transport. "APROBIO has also formally joined the Pan American Coalition on Liquid Biofuels, an important forum to promote the sustainable production and consumption of biofuels," he concludes.