Roadmap for Sustainable Biofuels / Bioenergy in Southern Africa - Programme régional sur la sécurité énergétique et le changement climatique en Afrique subsaharienne
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Book Launch – `Roadmap for Sustainable Biofuels / Bioenergy in Southern Africa: Regulatory Frameworks for Improved Development Potential?`
“Roadmap for Sustainable Biofuels / Bioenergy in Southern Africa: Regulatory Frameworks for Improved Development Potential?”, is the name of the book that was launched on Tuesday, 2 May 2017 at the University of Johannesburg. The book is the outcome of an expert roundtable in 2015, which was organized by the University of Stellenbosch Development and Rule of Law Programme (DROP) and the Konrad-Adenauer-Foundation (KAS). The book focuses on the scientific, political and legal aspects of sustainable biofuels and bioenergy for Sub-Saharan Africa.
Energy independence is playing a growing role in politics, especially in the area of security, peace and stability worldwide. All eyes are on Africa, as it is the continent with the most “under-utilized” agricultural lands on earth. Keeping in mind the high pace of urbanization and population growth in Africa, development of new and sustainable energies are a growing need. Many studies have shown the growing need to produce cleaner energy and to stop climate change. Agenda 21, the Kyoto Protocol and other international agreements and determining national policy documents, emphasize the need to search for sustainable energy solutions and replace fossil fuels with renewable energy sources. Biofuels could increasingly become part of a sustainable solution to a wide range of challenges – environmental sustainability in the face of climate change, energy security, rising geographical instability and increasing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions.
The book “Roadmap for Sustainable Biofuels / Bioenergy in Southern Africa: Regulatory Frameworks for Improved Development Potential?” gives an overview of the scientific background of bioenergy and takes a critical look at possible risk factors for the environment and society by biofuel plants. A closer look is taken at the “socio-enviro-economic” impacts of biofuels with a focus on southern Africa. Furthermore the book provides a background on biofuel regulations from a comparative law perspective. The book aims to outline the potential to develop biofuels as one solution for climate change, energy security and socio-economic challenges.
KAS country director Henning Suhr and Professor Ruppel, initiator and coordinator of the book, held the opening remarks of the book launch in Johannesburg. Mr. Ruppel gave an insight into the different perspectives on biofuels that are taken in the book. People from different disciplines – Law experts, biologists, renewable energy scientists – have come together, to show the area of tension in the context of global challenges, renewable energies, especially biofuels lay in. Alan Brent, one of the authors from the Centre for Renewable and Sustainable Energy Studies (CRSES), stressed out the importance of unifying the different disciplines. When looking at energy production through biofuels, food security, land capacity, water resources and social structures are crucial subjects to consider.
Khulekani Moyo from the Mandela Institute and John Kesi from the Faculty of Science, University of Johannesburg were invited as respondents and gave the audience further understandings of the subject. Dr. Thembakazi Mali from the South African National Energy Development Institute (SANEDI), gave an overview on the current development of renewable energies in South Africa, as she had taken part in the roundtable in 2015 already.
The dialogue was opened to the audience and a lively discussion between authors, experts, lecturers and students expanded to the interdisciplinary field around biofuels.