We are in the midst of a sustainable energy and climate change revolution, directly linked to the other major transformational trends of our time-the rise of the world's emerging economies, the world's rapid urbanization and the revolution in biotechnology. While not a panacea, biofuels represent one important choice in an increasing array of energy options. They have a significant role to play in the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions from transport, developing rural economies, and attracting private sector investment.
This study, prepared by Garten Rothkopf for the Inter American Development Bank, seeks to cut through the hype surrounding biofuels, and alternative energy writ large, and present an objective, fact-based analysis of the region's global competitive position looking forward to 2020. It includes the most extensive study done to date on the global biofuels market, including 50 countries. The report also focuses on the challenges that lie ahead, from ensuring that the choices made are sustainable in terms of their environmental and social impact to recognizing that unprecedented investment and innovation will produce new competitive forces that will require all who would lead to adapt or fall behind.
The growth of biofuels will favor countries with long growing seasons, tropical climates, high precipitation levels, low labor costs, low land costs, as well as the planning, human resources, and technological know how to take advantage of them. Latin America and Caribbean, led by Brazil, already produces 40% of the world's biofuels and is uniquely positioned to take advantage of this growing industry.
"A Blueprint for Green Energy in the Americas" offers a strategic blueprint for IDB activities in the region, to serve as the basis for even more focused and policy-oriented studies in the future.