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BIA
This project was launched in June 2009 by a consortium of European, African and Central American academic institutions. The BIA project investigated the opportunities and risks related to the production and utilization of biofuels in East Africa and in Central America.

This project was launched in June 2009 by a consortium of European, African and Central American academic institutions. The BIA project investigated the opportunities and risks related to the production and utilization of biofuels in East Africa and in Central America.

The main objective of the BIA project was to develop an enhanced information and knowledge basis upon which sustainable and pro-poor development strategies and policies on biofuel production could be designed and implemented by development partners and governments in both the North and the South.

A focus on Jatropha Curcas was chosen, as this feedstock is considered to have high potentials in marginal areas, and because a strong increase of its production was expected in East Africa. The project intended to assess opportunities and risks of increased Jatropha production, to appraise its social and environmental impacts, and to develop decision support tools for sustainable bioenergy production in East Africa.

In order to achieve these goals, four complementary modules were implemented by the project partner institutions

Module 1 - Crop growth and processing: Assessment of sustainable bioenergy production potentials and processing of Jatropha biomass in different production systems and under different environmental and cultural settings

Module 2 - Impacts of biofuel production: Case-study based research on the socio-economic and environmental impacts of biofuel production in the local context as well as life cycle assessments of various Jatropha value chains.

Module 3 - Global policy, trade and certification: Analysis of the influence of external socio- political and economic decision-making processes on the regional and local biofuel production processes in Eastern Africa and Central America

Module 4 - Potentials of biofuel in Eastern Africa: Up-scaling of finding from the three other modules in view of providing relevant decision-making and planning tools at the national and regional levels in Eastern Africa. Strong focus on spatial analysis and modelling.

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