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US-made Corn Ethanol Is Not the Way to Go, Warns Brazil's Lula

Sugarcane cutter in Brazil Once again Brazil's President, Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, stressed the importance of the Brazilian production of ethanol and biofuel and said that Brazil is capable of teaching wealthy countries how to reduce emissions of gases that cause greenhouse effect.

"We are introducing to the world a new energy matrix in the fuel sector. Should the world adopt it, then we will have much less pollution, much less gases emitted into the atmosphere, especially those that cause greenhouse effect.

"I am convinced that Brazil has things to teach the developed world  how to avoid emission of gases that lead to the greenhouse effect," said the president in his weekly radio show Café com o Presidente (Breakfast with the President).

Lula also commented on the Human Development Report of the United Nations Development Program (UNDP), disclosed last week. The document indicates that wealthy nations are responsible for 70% of the gases that cause the greenhouse effect, whereas poor countries answer to 2% and developed nations, such as Brazil and India, for 28%.

While discussing the UN survey, the president once again criticized the alcohol fuel produced by the United States, which has a higher cost.

"Brazilian alcohol limits emission of gases that lead to greenhouse effect by 70%". Ethanol, made out of corn, reduces gases by only 13% and has a higher cost, and this is the variety that the United States produces," Lula stated.

The UNDP report calls upon North Americans and Europeans to open up their markets to Brazilian ethanol, which is made from sugarcane, in addition to suggesting the implementation of a tax on gas emission.

According to the UN, the tax might reduce other tariffs, or encourage the development of less polluting fuels. The organization estimates that taxes on carbon dioxide CO² emission may generate annual revenues of up to US$ 265 million.

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