The western world, especially the North, has surrendered to its addiction to fossil fuels. This course has set in motion a process that can no longer be questioned: climate change. Many proposals have attempted to confront it, but the majority of them keep humanity on its current suicide course. Megaprojects to produce biofuels purport to be a solution. But have the people proposing such alternatives even stopped to consider their potential impact on ecosystems, communities, and cultures? This article lays out the steps that have paved the way for these projects, focusing especially on the ramifications of the African palm, from which one type of biofuel is derived.

Biofuels have their own history. To be brief, we’ll recall that during the energy crisis of 1973, Brazil refitted a portion of its sugar mills to produce ethanol, and in so doing became the leading exporter worldwide. Today, Colombia wants to follow suit and produce biofuels, particularly bioethanol and biodiesel.

Legislation Begins

In 2001, the passing of Law 693