ActionAid today launched an innovative anti biofuels campaign targeting Transport Secretary Philip Hammond by using adverts on buses which stop outside his office.
The adverts urge Mr Hammond to consider the impacts that biofuels are having in developing countries as they push thousands of the world’s poorest people off their land and into hunger.They are appearing on 50 buses on routes 507 and 521 with the slogan: “Biofuels. What is the human cost?”
The buses will pass the Department for Transport (DfT) in Westminster every five minutes so the messages will reach politicians and staff more than 100 times each week day for four weeks. Ads featuring Philip Hammond driving a bus also began appearing today on bus stops near the DfT.
Josie Cohen, ActionAid’s biofuels campaigner said: “We’ve calculated that adverts on buses that pass the DfT offices more than 2,000 times should be just about enough to ensure the staff can’t look out of the window without our campaign hitting home. Many buses are already running on this destructive fuel, making them the perfect vehicle to deliver our message.”
The European Union wants at least 10 per cent of transport fuels to come from renewable sources within the next 10 years. This target will be met in the main by industrial biofuels – fuels made on an industrial scale from agricultural crops, including important staple foods. A large proportion is likely to come from developing countries. ActionAid’s campaign comes as the government carries out a three month public consultation on biofuels. The aid agency is also asking supporters to text the DfT asking it to scrap its biofuel targets.ActionAid’s experience has been that turning more land over to biofuels has had a devastating impact on the ability of the world’s poorest people to make ends meet and feed their families.