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The Policy Context of Biofuels: A Case of Non-Governance at the Global Level?

  • Mairon G. Bastos Lima

    (Mairon G. Bastos Lima is a PhD candidate at the Institute for Environmental Studies (IVM), VU University Amsterdam.)

  • Joyeeta Gupta

    (Joyeeta Gupta is professor of climate change law and policy at the Institute for Environmental Studies (IVM), VU University Amsterdam and at UNESCO-IHE Institute for Water Education, Delft.)

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    The large-scale production of crop-based biofuels has been one of the fastest and most controversial global changes of recent years. Global biofuel outputs increased six-fold between 2000 and 2010, and a growing number of countries are adopting biofuel promotion policies. Meanwhile, multilateral bodies have been created, and a patchwork of biofuel policies is emerging. This article investigates the global biofuel policy context and analyzes its nature, its institutional architecture, and issues of access and allocation. Our assessment reveals a density of national policies but a paucity of international consensus on norms and rules. We argue that the global biofuel context remains a non-regime and that it has overlooked serious issues of access even as a risky North-South allocation pattern is created. Although biofuel governance is not completely absent, existing international institutions do not take account of the different voices in the debate and leave a large vacuum of unaddressed social and environmental issues. © 2013 by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

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    File URL: http://www.mitpressjournals.org/doi/pdf/10.1162/GLEP_a_00166
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    Article provided by MIT Press in its journal Global Environmental Politics.

    Volume (Year): 13 (2013)
    Issue (Month): 2 (May)
    Pages: 46-64

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    Handle: RePEc:tpr:glenvp:v:13:y:2013:i:2:p:46-64
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