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Bioenergy and Biofuels

Factsheet








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    Book (stand-alone)
    Small Scale Bioenergy Initiatives
    Brief description and preliminary lessons on livelihood impacts from case studies in Asia, Latin America and Africa
    2009
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    This study was conducted between September and November 2008 under a joint initiative of FAO and the Policy Innovations Systems for Clean Energy Security (PISCES) Energy Research Programme Consortium funded by DFID. The focus of the study was on the impacts that different types of local level Bioenergy initiatives can have on Rural Livelihoods in different contexts in the developing world. Livelihoods are understood as the enhancement of the full range of natural, financial, human, social and physical capitals on a sustainable ongoing basis. The 15 cases were selected from 12 countries in six regions of Latin America, Africa and Asia. Cases were selected to highlight the use of a range of bioenergy resources, including natural bioresources, bioresidues from existing agricultural, forestry or industrial activities; and biofuels (solid and liquid) from purpose grown energy crops. The initiatives match these resources to a range of energy needs includ ing cooking, mobility, productive uses and electricity for lighting and communication - thereby highlighting the scope of bioenergy applications. The approach taken also considers the non-energy by-products of production processes where these form, or could form, a significant added benefit in terms of livelihoods, revenues and efficiency. The case study approach combines a Market Systems perspective, the “4Rsâ€Â Framework of Relationships, Rights, Responsibilities and Revenu es to the actors in the system, assessment of the impacts of the initiatives on the Livelihoods Assets of the actors in the chain, and consideration of the sustainability of these impacts. In the final part of the study preliminary conclusions are drawn and recommendations on future areas of work are made.
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    Booklet
    Meeting the mandates set for liquid biofuels for transport in the Philippines
    Bioenergy and Food Security (BEFS) case study
    2019
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    Approximately three-fifths of energy in the Philippines comes from fossil fuels, followed by biofuels and waste and geothermal energy, and most of the fossil fuels are imported. The transport sector is the main consumer of fossil fuels in the form of gasoline and diesel. Given this, the Government of the Philippines established the Biofuels Act which sets out targets to produce ethanol and biodiesel to be blended with fossil fuels. This case study presents the biofuel targets, an assessment of selected bioenergy value chains and an overview of what would be required to meet the targets set by the policy. The bioenergy value chains assessed are sugarcane and molasses for ethanol production and coconut to produce biodiesel.
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    Document
    Intra-industry trade in biofuels
    How environmental legislation fuels resource use and GHG emissions
    2012
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    We have seen significant volumes of intra-industry trade in ethanol between the United States of America and Brazil. A trend which started in 2010 and accelerated in the second half of 2011 with large quantities of ethanol crossing paths in trade between the two countries. While intra-industry trade of homogenous products is not new, it is typically explained by factors such as seasonality or cross-border exchanges caused by transportation cost differentials. None of the traditional market facto rs can explain the volumes of intra-industry trade in ethanol between the US and Brazil. Instead, it appears to be driven by differential environmental policy that aims to capture differences in production methods of the underlying feedstocks and processing methods based on credence attributes of biofuels. Environmental legislation is inducing the product differentiation that invites arbitrage between the two countries resulting in the two-way trade of an otherwise physically homogenous product; in so doing, additional fossil energy is consumed in the mutual exchange of ethanol along with associated GHG emissions and the policy costs to consumers are raised which may suppress demand further reducing the displacement of fossil fuels, both of which are in direct conflict with environmental objectives of many biofuel programmes. With tighter environmental constraints on biofuel production written into EU policy, the potential for competition for classes of renewable fuels increases and could extend its reach from bioethanol to include biodiesel and/or the underlying feedstocks in the EU, the US and Brazil. This would create additional opportunities for arbitrage among the regions as a result of disparate policy differentiation of biofuel products. We submit options to mitigate this through the use of a “book and claim” system under which each country could pursue its own policy objectives while acting in a coordinated fashion to reduce costs and emissions.

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