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Reality Check: The Inconvenient Truth About OXFAM Canada's Facts

Reality Check: The Inconvenient Truth About OXFAM Canada's Facts

OTTAWA, ONTARIO -- (MARKET WIRE) -- 06/25/08 -- An inconvenient truth of the OXFAM Canada biofuels 'study' released today is that it has no basis in fact. Here are the facts on biofuels in Canada.

OXFAM MYTH: "The most recent science indicates ethanol made from corn in Canada may actually emit more greenhouse gases than gasoline over the entire cycle of production and consumption."

REALITY: There are no studies on Canadian ethanol that support this conclusion. Using Natural Resources Canada calculations, the 5% renewable fuel standard in Canada will reduce GHG emissions by more than 4.2 megatonnes, which is the equivalent of taking over 1 million cars off the road each and every year. U.S. based studies that call into question the GHG benefits of ethanol have been widely discredited by the scientific community.

OXFAM MYTH: "At projected rates of increase, Canada's taxpayers will be paying $1bn per year in biofuel subsidies by 2010."

REALITY: The entire federal EcoEnergy for Biofuels program is worth $1.5 billion over nine years. It will generate $600 million in new economic activity every year. The support for biofuels should also be put in perspective. Canadian governments have also invested several multi-billion dollars in other forms of energy including nuclear, wind, hydro, oil and natural gas.

OXFAM MYTH: "More than half of Canada's corn crop would have to be turned into fuel to meet the five per cent target proposed in the legislation before the Senate."

REALITY: In Canada ethanol is made from wheat and corn. 4% of our wheat crop (2.5% if you factor in distillers grains) and 11% of our corn crop (8% if you factor in distillers grains) is used in the production of 1 billion litres of ethanol today. Canada's new 5% renewable fuels target would increase production to 2.5 billion litres of ethanol.

THE FUTURE REALITY: OXFAM Canada does not account for the promise of next generation biofuels such as cellulose ethanol and biodiesel produced with algae. These and other emerging technologies will further reduce green house gases and moderate prices at the pump.

Contacts:
CRFA
Robin Speer
(613) 295-6485
Website: www.greenfuels.org

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