Policy and institutional frameworks for the promotion of sustainable biofuels in Mali

Produced as part of the Governments, markets and climate change mitigation CCCEP research programme theme

Abstract of Working Paper 103

This paper presents a multi-level assessment of the potential for oil-bearing, non-edible tree Jatropha curcas (Jatropha) to improve rural development and energy security in Mali: a sub-Saharan African country that has led biofuel policy initiatives.

It addresses knowledge gaps on the role of national policy instruments and multi-stakeholder engagement in the uptake of biofuel activities. Semi-structured interviews were undertaken with government departments, international organizations, private sector representatives, NGOs and farming communities.

Data show that projects focusing on Jatropha use for rural electrification can improve household access to fuel and reduce time spent on domestic chores by providing community pressing facilities, power generators and Multifunctional Platforms. However, biodiesel supplies remain insufficient for these benefits to materialise.

Gaps between policy targets, actual yields and land cover are identified. Ambitious land cover targets set within national policies could risk land use shifts away from food towards biofuel production.