The Challenges and Opportunities of Developing Biodiesel in Ethiopia: The case of castor seed in Eastern Hararge

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Addis Ababa University


Biojilels are believed to be reducing GHG emissions, contributing 10 energy security for foss il file l imporling counlries. generaling new income opportunilies in rural areas, and improving energy access for Ihe poor, wilh posilive implicalions for lhe environmenl and poverly reduclion. However lhere are olher negalive consequences lhal queslion Ihe viabililY of producing hiofi,lels. which includes conversion of land and olher produclive resources from food 10 bioJuels lhal could reduce food availability and increase food prices, and contribule 10 deplelion ofnalural resources when done in a non-sustainable manner in order to assess the challenges and opportunities of developing biodiesel in Ethiopia, farmers who are working wilh FloraEco Power Company by producing caSlor in Eastern Hararge were IiIken as a case study These farmers receive seeds, ferlilizers and peslicides ji'om Ihe company and grow castor on their ollin land Finally Ihey sell Ihe harvested seeds to this company at a fixed price set atlhe conlract signed behveen Ihem. The melhodology used was both qualilative and quantitative. Babille woreda was selected from Ihe three wuredas Ihal Ihe cumpany is wurking un due 10 ils road accessibililY and road availability. The sludy employed hvo-stage sampling procedure where al the first stage two kebeles were selected randomly from Babille woreda and at the second slage 90 farmers were selecled by systemalic random sampling. Parmers have benefited from this project in the case that new jobs have been createdfor them, which has brought addilional source of income. in addilion job opporlunities were available for nun-producers and agronomists in Ihe woreda. increase in price oJfood crops and decrease in foud supply has occurred in Ihe area due 10 the new practice of caSlor produclion 10 a certain degree in addition to shortage o/rainfall. Farmers have allocated portion of their land 10 castor produclion but since they were able 10 inlercrop caslor wilh olher food crops il has not compromised olher food produclion. Farmers use /erlilizers and peslicides monilored by agronomists who work with them which will not affect the environmenl. HOll'ever projects like this need proper moniloring 10 ensure sustainable development and to make small farmers higher benejiciaries.



Developing Biodiesel in Ethiopia