According to André Caranha Correa, Chancelor's Director of Energy, there isn't enough information out there on Brazilian ethanol. First of all, Correa said, it should be excluded from the world rise of feedstocks. He also said that Brazil started working with ethanol in 1975 after the 1973 oil crisis, so it's a well-known and proven technology / solution. He compared sugarcane with USA's corn-based ethanol, saying the U.S. fuel could affect food prices. He insisted that ethanol is more environmental friendly than gasoline, even denying that the Amazon forest was being destroyed to produce sugarcane (maybe not, but don't forget this). As for the poor work conditions we've heard about, Correa said that these were completely against Brazilian legislation and that the Goverment was performing routine inspections to put an end to the dreadful situations.
Why is Brazil doing this? Remember that Brazil is fighting to export its ethanol into the EU. The "diplomatic offensive" aims to respond to all kind of attacks and defend the sustainability of this biofuel.
[Source: Agencia EFE via Econoticias]