Publication - Sustainable bioenergy potential in Zambia

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Sustainable bioenergy potential in Zambia
FAO and the Ministry of Energy of Zambia
Published in
Zambia is richly endowed with a wide range of biomass sources including woodlands, forests, agricultural residues and livestock waste. Biomass energy contributes supplies over 70 percent of the country’s energy needs. Due to the current extraction and consumption methods, the use of biomass energy has been linked with detrimental environmental effects such as deforestation and forest degradation as well as climate change, due to the loss of carbon sinks. Inefficient utilisation of biomass contributes significantly to deforestation which is estimated at between 79 000 – 150 000 ha per year, and negatively affects the health and income of rural households that depend on forest products for their livelihoods.

Sustainable bioenergy strategies and alternative bioenergy solutions need to be defined and integrated into current efforts of the country to increase stable and sustainable access to energy. This report assesses the country context and defines which bioenergy options can be viable considering a number of solutions for electricity production, cooking fuels and transport fuels at the provincial and district level. Possible options originating from crop residues, livestock residues and forest plantation harvesting residues are identified, having netted out agriculture and forestry needs. The assessment now needs to be followed by local verification and investment to deploy an initial set of bioenergy projects and test the findings on the ground. Cite this content as: ​FAO and the Ministry of Energy of Zambia. 2020. Sustainable bioenergy potential in Zambia – An integrated bioenergy and food security assessment. Environment and Natural Resources Management Working Papers No. 84. Rome.

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