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Transport written question – answered on 25th February 2013.

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Photo of Caroline Nokes Caroline Nokes Conservative, Romsey and Southampton North

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what assessment he has made of the effect of increasing ethanol imports under the Renewable Transport Fuels Obligation on the ethanol and biodiesel production sector.

Photo of Norman Baker Norman Baker The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Transport

The Department for Transport administers the Renewable Transport Fuels Obligation (RTFO) and produces statistics on the supply of biofuel and biogas in the UK by country of origin and feedstock, and reports performance. Data is available at:

For data reported under the RTFO from December 2011 to April 2012, 69% of bioethanol reported was sourced from US corn. This reduced to 63% in the first half of 2012/13 (15 April 2012 to 14 October 2012). However, this latest data only covers biofuels for which Renewable Transport Fuel Certificates (RTFCs) have been issued. Suppliers do not need to apply for RTFCs until the end of each year. The data may not therefore be fully representative of actual supply.

The RTFO scheme is designed to reduce carbon emissions and promote the supply of sustainable biofuels. The RTFO operates as a market based instrument which gives suppliers the flexibility to meet their obligation at least cost. It is the Government's primary mechanism for implementing the transport elements of the EU renewable energy directive.

The Department for Transport will carry out a post-regulatory impact assessment of the RTFO in 2013.

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