Mapping Bioenergy Supply and Demand in Selected Least Developed Countries (LDCs): Exploratory Assessment of Modern Bioenergy’s Contribution to SDG7

Dilip Khatiwada, Pallav Purohit, Emmanuel Ackom

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Bioenergy can play an important role in achieving the agreed United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and implementing the Paris Agreement on Climate Change, thereby advancing climate goals, food security, better land use, and sustainable energy for all. In this study, we assess the surplus agricultural residues availability for bioelectricity in six least developed countries (LDCs) in Asia and Africa, namely Bangladesh, Lao-PDR, and Nepal in Asia; and Ethiopia, Malawi, and Zambia in Africa, respectively. The surplus agricultural residues have been estimated using residue-to-product ratio (RPR), agricultural residues lost in the collection, transportation and storage, and their alternative applications. We use a linear regression model to project the economic potential of bioelectricity. The contribution of bioelectricity for meeting the LDCs’ electricity requirements is estimated in a time frame between 2017 and 2030. Our results reveal that the surplus biomass feedstock available from the agriculture sector could provide the total current electricity demand in Malawi alone, followed by Nepal (45%), Bangladesh (29%), Lao People’s Democratic Republic (Lao-PDR) (29%), Ethiopia (27%), and Zambia (13%). This study also explores the complementarity and synergies of bioelectricity, SDG7, and their interlinkages with other SDGs. Findings from the study show that providing access to sustainable energy in the LDCs to meet the SDG7 by 2030 might be a challenge due to limited access to technology, infrastructure, and finance. Site-specific investigations on how much agricultural residues could be extracted in an environmentally benign manner for bioelectricity and increased investment in the bioenergy sector are key potential solutions in a myriad of options required to harness the full energy potential in the LDCs.
Original languageEnglish
Article number7091
Issue number24
Publication statusPublished - 2019

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