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Synthesis of the Workshop

Background and Organization of the Workshop

The workshop was the first meeting organized by the Wood Energy component and was devoted to meeting the anglophone national wood-energy experts already involved in the activities of this component. It was also intended to meet with delegates of other regional and national institutions and projects directly or indirectly involved in wood-energy issues.

A second meeting for the French-speaking countries will be organized, with similar objectives, in early 2001, with venue in West Africa in a location yet to be defined.

Before the meeting, the invited participants were provided with the preliminary work programme, logistic information, and the request to prepare a short report on National arrangements and capacity to collect wood energy information and statistics.

In total, 27 persons attended the meeting:
participants from the following English-speaking countries: Eritrea, Gambia, Ghana, Kenya, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, Sudan and Uganda. Most of them had been already been involved, under the TCDC Programme, in the preparation of country studies aimed to
   – review existing country information on wood fuel;
   – compare this information with that produced by the FAO WETT study; and
   – analyse current and foreseeable trends in wood-fuel consumption, supply, etc. at the national and sub-national level;

· delegates from invited agencies and projects such as the African Academy of Sciences, the World Bank-RPTES project, the SADC Forestry Sector Technical Coordination Unit (FSTCU), CIRAD-Forêt, the regional FAO Project AFRICOVER, and the Istituto Agronomico per l'Oltremare.
UNEP co-organizers from the Division of Policy Development and Law, and from the Regional Office for Africa;
FAO representatives and community forestry staff from the FAO office in Kenya; one officer from the Subregional Office for Southern and Eastern Africa (SAFR); one officer from the Regional Office for Africa (RAF); and two officers from the Forest Products Division (FOPW) at FAO Headquarters in Rome.

See more details in Annex 1 - List of Participants.

The workshop was hosted by UNEP in their excellent conference facilities, with the efficient assistance of UNON Conference Service.

The agenda for the five-day meeting is given in Annex II. In synthesis, the activities proceeded as follows:

The chairmanship of the meeting was assigned, every half-day, to a different person, including country delegates, representatives of regional agencies, FAO and UNEP officers.

Only few inconveniences were experienced, mostly concerning travel arrangements for some participants. For instance, the prolonged strike at the Abidjan airport in Côte d'Ivoire delayed the arrival of the Gambian participant by two days. In addition, the delegates from Liberia and Zambia had to cancel their travel at the last moment.

Workshop Activities

Welcome and Introductory Addresses

· Mr Bai-Mass Taal, welcomed the participants on behalf of Mr Bakary Kante, Acting Director of UNEP's Regional Office for Africa. In his speech (see Annex III), he highlighted the importance that wood energy in Africa had for the current UNEP policy, and he emphasized the need to join hands among UN and non-UN organizations to make best use of the limited resources and coordinate action. He stressed the extreme importance of wood energy in the region and how reliable knowledge represented a step forward to the sustainable solution of this widening issue. He pointed out that awareness on this problem was not new since it had already been stated in the recommendations of the 1980 Nairobi Programme of Action, and emphasized the need for effective action.

· Mr D. Gustafson, FAO Representative in Kenya, expressed satisfaction at the positive synergies between UNEP, the European Commission and FAO embodied in this meeting. He outlined the many activities carried out by these organizations to assist Member Countries in promoting sustainable forest resource management.

· Mr M.D. Mbugua, Deputy Chief Conservator of Forests, welcomed the participants on behalf of Mr Mutie, Kenya Chief Conservator of Forests, and officially opened the meeting (see Annex III). In his speech, Mr Mbugua emphasized the inadequacy that most African countries faced vis-à-vis the essential task of assessing and managing wood-fuel resources, which represented the only source of energy for the vast majority of African people. He stressed the need, among other issues, for efficient working synergies between the forestry and energy sectors.

Presentation of Country Reports


Mr Elias Araya from Eritrea presented a synthesis of two background papers. The first part referred to the document Fuelwood production and consumption in Eritrea - Review of the existing studies related to fuelwood and/or charcoal (E. Bein and E. Araya, 1999) prepared under the TCDC Programme and presented:

· a profile of the country and of its natural resources, dominated by bush land which cover 63.8 percent of the country; the considerable afforestation effort following the independence (20 200 ha planted between 1991 and 1999), and the natural regeneration programme; the important contribution of forest products to the national economy;
the dominant role of wood fuel, covering 80.1 percent of household energy consumption (69.4% fuelwood and 10.7% charcoal in 1996), and about 59 percent of the total national energy consumption;
the gap between wood-fuel demand and sustainable supply, which should be alleviated by:
  – enhancing eucalyptus plantation productivity and alternative sources of energy;
  – promotion of on-farm wood production, distribution of quality seeds, adoption of agro-forestry and intercropping, etc.
  – promotion of energy-efficient wood stoves and other conservation measures, use of alternative sources, such as biogas, solar energy, wind energy , etc.

The second part of the presentation was devoted to National arrangements and capacity to collect wood energy information and statistics (see Annex VI). He reported that statistics on production and import of wood products were maintained by the Ministry of Agriculture and Finance, respectively, through various channels and control systems. However, most of the informal sector escaped this screening and recording.

He indicated that the Ministry of Energy and Mines assessed the informal energy sector through household energy surveys and that many institutions were also involved in the process of collecting, analysing and disseminating data on wood products, but there was little harmonization of measurement units, timing, etc., which limited the validity of available data.

The participant stressed the importance of well-recorded and analysed wood energy data and recommended improvements in institutional coordination; standardization of measurement units, conversion factors and reporting; frequency of consumption surveys; data transparency and accessibility; staff capacity in data processing; hardware and software availability and electronic communication capacity; and surveys of wood resources outside the forests.


Mr Lamin Bojang presented the situation of the wood-energy sector in Gambia on the basis of the report prepared, under the TCDC Programme, by Mr Yorro M.A. Sallah, former Acting Assistant Director, Forestry Department. Mr Bojang explained that, in spite of two relatively recent studies (1993 Fuelwood Survey and 1999 Energy Survey, both conducted by the National Climate Committee - NCC), considerable uncertainties remained concerning the wood-fuel supply/demand balance in the country.

He indicated that in the country firewood remained the by far more important energy source, covering well over 90 percent of household needs. However, it was very difficult to assess the wood-fuel supply situation as it seemed that a good proportion of it came illegally from the Cassamance region of Senegal.

To clarify the wood energy situation in the country, the author recommended that reliable statistics of wood-fuel imports be kept at entry point; resource management responsibilities be decentralized to local communities, including agreed management plans for green wood harvesting; wood-fuel consumption be monitored; reliable databases be established; the pressure on the limited wood resources be relieved by substitution of wood-fuel with alternative forms of energy.


Mr Eric Ofori-Nyarko, Ghana Energy Commission, presented two papers. In the first one, entitled Ghana wood-energy sector (see Annex VI) he discussed the rapid increase in wood-fuel consumption in the country (from 15.9 million m3 to 20.6 million m3, i.e. 30% in ten years) and the serious supply/demand unbalance, which was the cause of an alarming depletion of natural vegetation, particularly the savannah woodlands in the Brong Ahafo region.

He stressed that wood-fuel data was scarce and often unreliable, making planning activities and impact assessment extremely difficult. He indicated that the main critical issues were difficult substitution of wood-fuel with other fuels (LPG, kerosene and electricity) due to high direct or indirect costs; unreliable supply; inefficient promotion and dissemination of improved stoves; weak wood-fuel policies, which failed to address current problems.

He suggested remedial measures, such as the development of institutional capacities within the Forestry Commission and Energy Commission; the preparation of a wood-fuel resources development plan based on realistic production/demand assumptions; the realization of reliable inventory data on sustainable supply and on consumption; and the development of policies aimed at the successful promotion and dissemination of energy-saving stoves and favouring fuel substitution.

In the second paper on National arrangements and capacity to collect wood-energy information and statistics (Annex VI), Mr Ofori-Nyarko explained that liaison and coordination among institutions involved on WE data were very weak.

He explained that the Forestry Commission and the Energy Commission both had the mandate to develop policies for sustainable utilization of the resources, i.e. forests and energy, respectively; however, in the case of wood-energy there was an overlap. He indicated that both commissions were currently building human capacities and developing programmes for the creation of a comprehensive database on wood-fuel resources, production and consumption. He said that the Ministry of Mines and Energy (MME), the Energy Commission and the Forestry Commission were the institutions responsible for the compilation and storage of data on wood-fuel consumption, with the recently established Energy Commission building up a more important role in this context.

He added that the energy sector was also receiving support from DANIDA, which included the collection of data on wood-fuel supply and consumption in the northern part of the country. Mr Ofori-Nyarko described the methods that the Energy Commission intended to adopt and the activities it intended to carry out in order to fill the information gap in this sector.


The presentation of the Kenyan participants, Mr K. Kareko, Mr J. Githomi and Mr P.N. Mbuthi, focused on the national arrangements and capacity to collect wood-energy information (full paper given in Annex VI). They stated that the institutions involved in the wood-energy sector were the Forestry Department (FD) in the Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources (MENR); the Renewable Energy Division of Ministry of Energy (MoE); and the Agroforestry Unit of the Soil and Water Conservation Branch (SWCB) in the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MoA&RD).

They informed that in 1982 a MoU had been signed by the three ministries to sanction the establishment of energy centres at the district level which up to then had had mixed success due to conflicts of mandate and policies. MoE and FD carried out many independent, and often incompatible, wood-fuel consumption, supply and supply/demand balance studies covering different areas.

They added that other agencies were also playing important roles, such as the Department of Resource Survey and Remote Sensing (DRSRS) of MENR and the Central Bureau of Statistics (CBS). Concerning sustainable supply, forecasts and management guides were provided by the Kenya Forestry Master Plan (KFMP), which was theoretically revised every five years.

Although many wood-fuel and rural energy surveys had been carried out in the last 20 years, as described in detail in Annex 1 of the paper presented, the authors lamented that, due to their fragmentation and poor consistency, they failed to contribute significantly to the understanding of the sector.

The authors recommended that a comprehensive national wood-energy survey be carried out and that resources be identified for building adequate capacities at FD, MoE and DRSRS.


Mrs N.L. Masilo,1 presenting the paper An update of the Lesotho wood-fuel database, prepared under the TCDC Programme, explained that the most authoritative study on wood-fuel consumption and supply in Lesotho had been the GoL/GTZ National Energy Survey, carried out in two stages: Rural Sector Energy Consumption (1986), and Urban Sector Energy Consumption (1987), sampling 2 000 rural and 500 urban households in all districts.

She concluded that the results of these survey were used to prepare the Lesotho Energy Master Plan (LEMP) which indicated that, in order to reduce the dependence on imports for wood fuel and meet the current and projected energy demand, Lesotho should establish about 6 000 ha/a of woodlots up to 2010.


Mr R.F.E. Mumba, from the Forestry Sector Technical Coordination Unit (FSTCU) of SADEC, presented his paper Wood energy situation in Malawi as a case study for the SADC Region (see Annex VI). Before entering into the specifics of Malawi, Mr Mumba highlighted that in the SADC Region over 80 percent of the population depended on wood fuel. In Malawi, 93 percent of the population depended on wood as a source of energy and the pressure on the natural resources was very high, with an estimated annual deforestation rate of 1.6 percent. He emphasized that at the national level only 15 percent of the wood came from forest reserves, 25 percent from private woodlots and 60 percent from customary lands. Wood collection, normally done by women on foot, was getting more and more difficult. The distance to be covered was increasing constantly and had already reached over 3 km in 25 percent of the cases. He reported that wood-fuel consumption was 13 million m3 in 1995 and 14.3 million m3 in 1996, with a 10 percent increase (WETT estimated about 13.2 million m3 for 1996). He described that the main strategies pursued to meet demand were plantation establishment (approximately 23 000 ha established with World Band and NORAD funding between 1986 and 1992) and tree planting by communities. Use of improved wood stoves was being promoted but most rural population could not afford them.

He described that in 1983 the Government of Malawi had created the Energy Studies Unit within the Department of Forestry under the World Bank Wood Energy project. The mandate of the unit was to carry out studies in the use of energy and provide information for the formulation of the energy policy. The main constraints were lack of funding, limited manpower and lack of coordination among stakeholders.


Mr Pedro Duarte Mangue (workshop participant) presented his paper written together with Mr Mandrate Oreste Nakala, which discussed in great detail the importance of wood fuel in satisfying national energy needs at both the rural and urban level.2

Mr Duarte provided a clear picture of the projects and activities carried out to develop this sector and the efforts undertaken to meet national requirements. Nonetheless, he concluded that there was no systematic recording system of wood-fuel consumption, except for some studies limited to forest plantations, whereas most of the supply came from natural forests.

He indicated that the Directorate of Forestry and Wildlife of the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development had recognized the existing weakness of the fuelwood consumption recording system and, therefore, had been seeking funds to carry out more studies on the subject.

In presenting his second paper on National arrangements and capacity to collect wood energy information and statistics (see Annex VI), Mr Mangue informed that the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development through its National Directorate of Forestry and Wildlife (DNFFB) was the main institution that had the mandate of managing and controlling the utilization of the country's wood energy resources.

He explained that the National Institute of Statistics within the Ministry of Plan and Finance was responsible for the collection of data on wood-fuel consumption, and the Ministry of Energy and Natural Resources was responsible for defining the policy and strategy on domestic energy, mainly around urban areas.

He pointed out that the wood-fuel supply assessment carried out by DNFFB seemed to be limited, as in most cases, to the formal sector, on the basis of administrative and accounting evidence, such as felling licences; royalty fees and revenues from penalties due to transgressions; transit records, etc.

He said that most activities carried out in this sector had been project-driven, with support from the World Bank and other institutions (SIDA, GTZ and FAO) with the result that most of the information produced for the country was scattered and of little use in the planning process.

He, concluded that unfortunately there was neither a defined calendar nor programme to carry out regular assessments of wood fuels.


Dr H.O. Kojwang,3 in his paper Wood fuels review and assessment, described the wood energy sector in Namibia. He explained that three main studies had been recently carried out in Namibia to assess wood-fuel consumption patterns, showing that the majority of Namibia's population would still rely on wood fuel in the foreseeable future.

The first study was carried out in 1992 by the Namibia Institute for Social and Economic Research (NISER) over Ovamboland in the north and the Katutura Community in Windhoek. The second study was commissioned by the current Directorate of Forestry in 1996 and studied fuelwood consumption in major urban areas. The third study was carried out by the Ministry of Energy in Wamukonya in 1997 and looked at the consumption pattern of biomass energy in seven out of the 13 political regions of Namibia.

The studies so far conducted were not coordinated and the results were not widely discussed between the ministries of Environment and Tourism, Housing, Forestry, and Mines and Energy. Despite this, they had yielded useful information and seemed to have produced fairly comparable end results. The author recommended that the studies to be undertaken in the future should be better coordinated and conducted at regular intervals.

The participant from Namibia, Mr Moses Chakanga, presented his paper on National arrangements and capacities to collect wood-energy information and statistics in Namibia (see Annex VI). Mr Chakanga explained that the Directorate of Forestry within the Ministry of Environment and Tourism and the Directorate of Energy within the Ministry of Mines and Energy were the two main institutions responsible for the administration of wood energy in Namibia.

He described that the Directorate of Energy chaired the National Biomass Steering Committee, whose scope included coordination and liaison, at the national and regional level, with organizations and partners involved in biomass energy conservation. The Committee was composed by the Directorate of Energy, UNDP-UNESCO, Desert Research Foundation of Namibia (DRFN), Association for Local Authorities in Namibia (ALAN), Namibia NGO Forum, and Directorate of Agricultural Research and Training.

He added that WF supply studies were the responsibility of the Directorate of Forestry. The first large-scale forest inventory in Namibia was started in 1995 and was still going on. He regretted that at present no institution performed analysis of supply/demand balance and forecasts of future scenarios. However, the task would be the responsibility of the Central Bureau of Statistics in the National Planning Commission. The role of the directorates of Forestry and Energy would be to supply data and information.


In presenting the paper Country report - Sudan (Annex VI) Mr Mohamed Ezeldeen Hussein provided several alternative estimates of Sudan's wood resources, showing how various sources presented contradictory estimates of forest and woodland areas and growing stock.

He pointed out that the forest product consumption survey, carried out in 1994 with FAO/Netherlands support, provided a clear picture of the importance of wood fuel in the national energy budget. According to the 1994 energy balance (Table 7) wood fuel covered 70.8 percent of all national needs, 86.8 percent of household needs, 69.3 percent of the industrial sector energy requirements, 67.1 percent of the commercial sector needs and 100 percent of the energy needs of the Quaranic schools. He indicated that various scenarios of wood-fuel demand projections to year 2000 were provided, with the 1994 Forest Product Consumption Survey data as baseline. Consumption projections showed a slight reduction of fuelwood and an increase of charcoal. The recent Government policy to reduce petroleum product prices would most likely result in a decrease in wood-fuel consumption. He mentioned that the supply pattern was currently based on the FAO/Netherlands-supported National Forest Inventory 1998 (carried out in 1995-1997). However, the inventory could not be carried out in the southern provinces due to the civil war, nor along several border areas, thus excluding important wooded areas of the country.

He stated that the supply gap, defined as the difference between demand for forest biomass and sustainable supply, continued to widen tremendously for the following main reasons:

· The increase of population and higher degree of urbanization as a result of huge migrations to urban centres caused by drought and desertification.
The negative impact of the expansion of mechanized farming on the supply gap due to the lack of a defined land-use plan.
Insufficient investments to replace trees.
High prices of fuelwood and charcoal as a result of the high cost of transporting fuelwood from long distances.
Lack of alternative fuels encouraging the consumption of fuelwood.
Civil war and political conflicts in neighbouring countries with resulting large flows of refugees, who have a significant role in the consumption of the fuelwood.
Natural hazards (drought, floods and rainstorms)
The uneven distribution of forestry resources and population between the North and South.


Mr John T. Tumuhimbise presented the main features of the ongoing pilot study on Biomass energy methodologies for data collection, analysis and use, 4 which he summarized as follows:

Objectives of the pilot study: (i) Identify major sources of data on wood-fuel consumption; (ii) review methodologies for wood-fuel consumption assessment; (iii) recommend most appropriate methodologies that can generate data for planning and policy formulation.

Background and conceptual framework: Biomass energy covered 92 percent of total energy consumption. Wood fuels provided the bulk of energy needs of rural-based industries such as brick and lime burning, tea and tobacco curing, pottery and beer brewing. Charcoal was a major fuel in all urban and most peri-urban areas of Uganda. Almost all biomass-consuming sectors of the economy used inefficient energy conversion devices. Fuelwood and charcoal production imposed big stress on the wood resource base. Rapid population growth and policy failures aggravated the situation.

Rich, reliable, high-quality, statistically valid information was needed to provide solutions to the wood-energy problems. However, this information was very scarce in Uganda. The wood-fuel sector was further disadvantaged because it was largely informal.

Target groups for data collection: Women (collection, processing and use). Men (trade, charcoal production, transportation). Training institutions (universities, etc). Other institutions (private sector, NGOs). District Forest Office records (permits, volumes extracted).

Users of information: Local authorities; households; investors; producers and traders; commercial and institutional users; industrial users; forest and natural resources managers (information on what can be sustainably supplied).

Wood-fuels consumption data/methodologies: Common data generation through: national budget surveys, micro-surveys, sector surveys, other studies (ESMAP, research, Energy Department, FORI). Generic methods used (sampling and questionnaires). Many methodological shortcomings: snapshot activities on an ad hoc basis; no time series; seasonal variation not captured; timing and purpose not useful for sector planning; measurement units often vague (bags of charcoal, bundles of wood, lorry loads, etc.).

Wood-fuels supply: The National Biomass Study (NBS) had generated a very useful database for planning purposes. Available data: total quantities of biomass geographically distributed; levels of forest/woodland degradations; wood-deficit and wood-surplus areas. At the policy and intervention level, this information could be used to determine: fuelwood and charcoal production areas; areas where harvesting and/or enrichment planting could be done; areas requiring afforestation. This information, however, should be properly compiled, analysed and complemented by other sources if it was to translate into effective policies and plans. It should clearly capture the analytical and statistical issues for the policy maker.

[Quote from main paper p.13: The National Biomass Study is probably the best thing that ever happened to Uganda's Forestry sector. It is the major (may be only!) source of reliable secondary data in the Forest Department.]

The lead agencies in the wood-energy sector, i.e. the Forest Department for the supply side and the Energy Department for the demand side, should be responsible for information gathering and analysis. These institutions should take the lead in the creation, management and updating of a wood energy database. The database should be accessible and easy to update on a computer with user-friendly software.

Presentations of FAO activities

Presentation of the Partnership Programme EC-FAO, Mr P. Koné, FAO RAF

In his presentation (partially reported in section "Project Background and Objectives" and partially reported in Annex III), Mr Pape Koné described the overall scope and framework of the EC/FAO partnership programme, recalling the insistent requests from the African Forestry and Wildlife Commission (1995 and 1998), for international support to improve the forestry information base necessary for sound policy and sector planning, and to help strengthen data collection methodologies. He summarized the activities and the numerous regional workshops carried out during the first project "Data collection and analysis for sustainable forest management in ACP countries - Linking national and international efforts" during the period 1998-2000, covering five key topics: Forest Resources, Forest Plantations, Trees Outside the Forests, Wood Products (mainly Wood Energy) and Non-Wood Forest Products.

Mr Koné also presented the current project, its overall and immediate objectives and its six components, including Wood Energy Policy Development, which constituted the framework for implementation of this workshop. He concluded highlighting several key regional wood-energy issues and recommended that due consideration be given to:

· closer collaboration between the departments of energy, forestry, statistics, as well as other relevant stakeholders, on all aspects relating to wood energy;
harmonization of data collection and processing procedures at the national, regional and international levels;
establishment of National, Subregional and Regional Networks on Wood Energy in Africa.

Presentation of the Wood Energy Planning and Policy Development Component, Mr M. A. Trossero, FAO Headquarters

In his first presentation Mr Trossero summarized the main objectives of the project on Sustainable Forest Management in African ACP Countries, and presented its five main components, with particular emphasis on the fifth one: Wood Energy Planning & Policy Development (WEPP). He explained that the objective of this component was to strengthen wood energy planning and policy development in Africa ACP countries, and activities would be carried out in two phases:

a) the first phase of the activities would be devoted to enhancing wood-energy information systems within project's member countries (current phase);
b) the second phase would focus on promotion of planning sustainable, efficient and cost-effective modern energy systems.

Mr Trossero described the main activities undertaken during the current year concerning the following main topics:

(i) unified wood energy terminology - UWET;
(ii) revision and harmonization of data;
(iii) wood energy case and pilot studies;
(iv) guidelines for data verification and collection;
(v) regional workshops;
(vi) assessment of institutional capacities.

He concluded the first presentation with a description of main objectives of the workshop (see section "Background and Workshop Objectives").

In the second presentation on FAO activities on wood energy, Mr Trossero outlined the main scope and objectives of the Forest Products Division (FOP) within the FAO Forestry Department and its main areas of technical responsibility. He illustrated the organization of the Division, consisting of the following branches and services:

Forest Harvesting, Trade and Marketing - FOPH

Wood and Non-Wood Products Utilization - FOPW

Forest Harvesting
Forest Engineering
Forest Resource Utilization and Environment
Forest Products Trade
Forest Products Marketing

Non-wood forest products
Wood energy
Wood industry
Climate Change

Mr Trossero explained that the main objectives of the Wood and Non-Wood Products Utilization Branch were to provide technical assistance for the full and integrated utilization of forest products and services and increase the income from these sources. In particular, Mr Trossero outlined the scope and activities concerning climate change and wood energy, which could be summarized as follows:

Climate Change. He indicated that the main aim was to understand and assess the roles, contributions and implications of forests, forestry and wood-energy activities in the mitigation of climate change. The main activities to this end were to:

(i) carry out specialized studies;
(ii) supply information for GHG inventories;
(iii) increasepublic and private awareness concerning climate change issues;
(iv) provide technical assistance to Member Countries and specialized agencies such as SBSTA, IPCC, UNDP, WB, UNEP and GEF.

Wood Energy. Mr Trossero explained that the main aims were to:

(i) better understand wood energy roles and contributions;
(ii) promote environmentally friendly sources of energy for the development of forest areas;
(iii) diversify forestry activities;
(iv) assist in the development of WE policies and programmes in line with Kyoto Protocol through: 
 collection and dissemination of information and statistical data ;
         - development of the Wood Energy Information System (WEIS);
         - development and updating of the Forest Energy Forum (FEF) web site; 
         - unification of wood-energy (and bioenergy) terminology (UWET);
         - assistance in building national capacities for the improved collection of wood-energy data at the national level; 
         - assistance to countries for the development of wood-energy initiatives;
         - backstopping to field projects and participation in country missions;
         - development of partnerships with other organizations, i.e. IEA Headquarters, IEA Bioenergy;
         -  assistance in the implementation of field projects.

FAO Regional Study "The Role of Wood Energy in Africa", Dr. S. Amous

Dr Samir Amous presented the main features of the FAO study The role of wood energy in Africa (FAO 1999), and highlighted the critical issues concerning wood energy information in the region (excerpts of his presentation given in Annex III), pointing out that this study contained the most recent regional wood-fuel database. Copy of this document was distributed to all participants. After a synthetic review of critical issues, a description of the regional study and its methodology and a quick review of its findings, Dr Amous recommended that the following measures be taken to improve the status and role of wood-energy information:

Short-term measures

· More efficient data collection process to be established by FAO;
Identification of experts/specialists on wood fuel;
Improved involvement of FAO Programme Officers in the respective countries;
Consolidation of Best Estimates;
Collection of recommendations from country experts on ways to improve data collection procedures;
Modification of procedure for annual data query (FAO);
Preparation of a new questionnaire;
Possibility for country experts to simulate missing data (modelling, panel surveys, etc.)

Medium-term measures

· Launch of a pilot programme targeting the top ten consuming countries (or countries where data are highly uncertain);
Quick national survey (data gathering on wood-fuel demand by sector and area, by wood fuel type);
Information gathering on wood-fuel patterns and behaviours, i.e. past trends and outcomes;
Supply side information (origin of wood fuel, collecting practices, etc.).

Longer term measures

· A framework for data collection and updating should be developed in each African country, coupled to a systematic transmission process to FAO, which would act as an observatory for compiling data at aggregated levels. This would include:
   - Regular review of wood-fuel data (demand, supply, demand-supply balance) in each country
through field surveys, remote sensing and cartography programmes;
   - Creation of a framework for collaboration between African countries and FAO in the field of wood fuel in order to monitor the process properly;
   -  Creation of a regional framework for collaboration and exchange of experiences among African countries.

Review of international versus national information, Mr R. Drigo, FAO

Mr Drigo presented one of the key activities of the Project's wood energy component, i.e. a review of the wood-energy information available at the country level, produced by national experts within the framework of the FAO TCDC Programme, and a comparison with the regional study described above. The Working Document Review of wood energy reports from ACP African countries, containing the results of the review of 20 country reports, was distributed to all participants. It was also mentioned that this document was being continuously updated as new reports were submitted. In his presentation Mr Drigo described briefly the scope of the TCDC studies and the countries covered so far (many of the participants were authors of such studies, which formed part of the countries' presentations). He described that the main results from the review showed that, out of the 20 studies analysed, 16 gave additional estimates of wood-fuel consumption which were more recent than those produced through the regional study described above; 10 studies (50%) provided estimates with urban/rural breakdown; 8 studies (40%) provided estimates with household/industrial breakdown. Only seven studies (35%) discussed supply and supply/demand balance with adequate supporting data. Mr Drigo highlighted the considerable discrepancies between the various sources concerning wood-fuel consumption rates (fuelwood and charcoal). The analysis referred to the 20 countries as a group, comparing the new country estimates with those from the regional study, as well as at the individual country level, considering the values coming from all available sources. Mr Drigo presented also biomass flux diagrams taken from the FAO pan-tropical land cover monitoring study, which described the changes that had taken place over the period 1980-1990 and the associate biomass losses. Two interesting cases were discussed as example of rapid land cover changes caused by local population needs for land and energy, i.e. Zambia and Burkina Faso. Finally, the regional biomass flux diagram for tropical Africa was presented, and the dominant land-cover changes for the entire region were discussed. He concluded that wood-fuel exploitation was most probably not the primary cause of deforestation, but no doubt most of the wood coming from these processes represented a steady supply source for energy use. What if forests were truly protected?

Concerning the TCDC studies, Mr Drigo concluded that they were (i) very informative; (ii) more up-to-date than regional and international sources (six years on average); and (iii) useful to promote personal/ institutional links.

He observed that in the information provided there was poor consistency in available consumption estimates; data sources were poorly documented; there was very little emphasis on data reliability; wood-fuel supply information was largely inadequate; and information was lacking on natural/man-made wood-fuel resources and distribution.

In conclusion he recommended that:
(i) data sources should be documented and their reliability defined;
(ii) reliable and objective survey methods should be developed and applied;
(iii) existing knowledge on supply sources, their distribution and sustainability should be integrated (land cover data, i.e. AFRICOVER and biomass studies);
(iv) study of land-use dynamics should be promoted in order to foresee wood-fuel shortages and other critical events;
(v) existing knowledge should be shared and utilized.

AFRICOVER, Mr Luca Alinovi, Chief Technical Adviser

Mr Luca Alinovi, Chief Technical Adviser presented the AFRICOVER project - regional land cover mapping as basis for resources assessment and potential supply estimations - and described the overall objectives which aimed at:

(i) providing each participating country with a detailed and harmonized national database on environmental resources (land cover/basic land use) at the scale of 1:200.000 (and 1:100.000 for small countries); and
(ii) creating a Multi-Purpose Database for Environmental Resources (MADE), containing detailed/ homogeneous land cover and environmental information that could be used by a large number of specialized end-users.

He mentioned that the countries already participating in the project, at different stages of progress, were Burundi, Democratic Republic of Congo, Egypt, Eritrea, Kenya, Rwanda, Somalia, Sudan, Tanzania and Uganda. Mr Alinovi described the main features of the Land Cover Classification System (LCCS), which was being adopted as the official FAO system and indicated the possible use of the AFRICOVER database as a potential source of data to support detailed analysis and estimate of wood biomass.

Other Presentations

RPTES/ CRETAS, Mr Mamadou Dianka, Technical Secretary, Group Africaine d'Appui (GAA)

Mr Mamadou Dianka, Technical Secretary of the Group Africaine d'Appui (GAA), presented the activities of the Centre de Ressources et d'Etudes des Stratégies du Secteur des Energies Traditionnelles pour l'Afrique Subsaharienne (CRETAS), which is part of the World Bank Regional Programme for the Traditional Energy Sector (RPTES). Mr Dianka described CRETAS and its partners (RPTES teams, CIABE, universities and research centres, FAO, UEMOA, CEDEAO, BAD, PEA, etc.), its objectives and its plans for the establishment of a regional data bank on domestic fuels. Its short-term programmes included:

(i) organization of a country capacity workshop for project implementation;
(ii) development of a CIABE/CRETAS work plan;
(iii) transfer of documentation to CRETAS from ESMAP and from the Association Bois de Feu;
(iv) co-organization of the second FAO/UNEP workshop for francophone countries.

CIRAD-Forêt, Dr Philippe Girard, Head of Energy-Environment Unit

Dr Philippe Girard, Head of Energy-Environment Unit of CIRAD-Forêt in his presentation stated that, through CIABE, CIRAD-Forêt pursued three main objectives:

(i) reinforce synergy between partners to avoid overlapping and promote cooperation between the scientific and technical community;
(ii) increase the use of biomass energy through the promotion of proven technology and support to R&D programmes; and
(iii) enhance capacity building through the organization of seminars, workshop and conferences.

Planned activities would include:

· production of energy for the manufacture of agricultural and forestry products;
waste upgrading;
rural electrification for agriculture development;
sustainable fuelwood supply to urban areas.

He briefly described the various ongoing activities, which involved five countries (Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Côte d'Ivoire, Mali and Senegal) and benefited from the partnership with NGOs, research training centres and many supporting agencies, such as MAE, EU, RPTES, IEPF, FICU, etc.

Dr Girard also presented:

· the GAA/RPTES-CIABE/CIRAD Action Plan, articulated in capacity building, full-scale demonstration projects, and R&D programme; and
the Biomass Action Plan, oriented towards 
  - promoting and strengthening capacity building through training and dissemination of information; 
  - demonstrating the capability of biomass to cope with African demand; and 
   - strengthening and restructuring of existing institutional capability.

IGAD's Regional Integrated Information System (RIIS), Mr Massimiliano Lorenzini, Instituto Agronomico per l'Oltremare

Mr Massimiliano Lorenzini from the Istituto Agronomico per l'Oltremare, Italy, presented the Regional Integrated Information System (RIIS) currently being implemented at IGAD. Mr Lorenzini explained that RIIS (Phase I) was a project sponsored by the Italian and United States governments and implemented by the Secretariat of the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD).

Mr Lorenzini indicated that IGAD countries (Djibouti, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia, Sudan and Uganda) were conscious of the fact that there was an urgent need in the region to strengthen member countries' capacity in producing, updating and disseminating reliable data/information in priority fields such as food security, environmental protection, etc. In the past many initiatives were begun but never fully integrated,resulting in either a duplication of information or incomplete or missing data.

He stated that RIIS would promote data/information documentation and sharing within and among IGAD countries to overcome these limitations. Prototypes of mechanisms to implement this strategy had been developed and included Internet portal to institutions working in the region and clearing house for information retrieval over a distributed database across the region. The portal was intended to foster communications among institutions, providing tools to access information and to facilitate searches for personnel and material resources. The clearing house used a decentralized approach, which should help institutions in their search and retrieval of information already available within the region. RIIS - Phase II would provide assistance (training, provision of hardware/software, etc.) to member countries to strengthen their capacities in using these tools with the final goal of enhancing cooperation among institutions. Mr Lorenzini concluded that more information on this important regional networking initiative was available on the RIIS web site

Field Trip Summary Report

Participants in the UNEP-FAO Regional Workshop on Wood Energy Information in Africa undertook a field trip to the Kiambu and Thika districts on Thursday, 25 October. As shown in the map below, the trip covered a round route (Nairobi-Mau Escarpment-Kamae Forest-Kieni Forest-Mangu-Thika-Nairobi) and took five hours.

The purpose of the trip was for the participants to see some various sources of wood fuel (forest and farmlands) in Kenya and was also a way for the participants to relax. Among others, the participants saw the Great Rift Valley, wood-cutting for charcoal production in a savannah type vegetation areas on the slopes of the Mau Escarpment, plantation establishment through the Non-Residential Cultivation (NRC) process, as well as natural forests and tea production.

At the viewpoint along the Mai Mahiu-Naivasha road, the participants saw extensive cutting of trees, mainly Acacia species, in the forest on the eastern slopes of the Rift Valley (Mau Escarpment). Signs of charcoal burning, in the form of smoke spewing from earth kilns scattered over the woodland, were clearly visible from the vantage point. From this observation, there was a feeling among the participants that the policy of making charcoal production illegal, while making its sale legal, was contradictory leading to the destruction of the tree resource base. If charcoal production was legalized and cutting took place within the framework of a felling plan, production would be sustainable. On the way to the viewpoint on Nairobi-Nakuru highway, the participants stopped at the Kinale forest to see the process of Non-Residential Cultivation (NRC) for plantation forest establishment.

The participants learned that NRC was a Forestry Department scheme, by which people from communities living close to a plantation forest were allocated plots (0.5-1 acres) within the clearfelled areas which they could cultivate to grow allowed food crops (annual crops). While taking care of their crops, they also took care of the seedlings planted by the Forestry Department. This arrangement had given satisfactory results in view of the shortage of labour at FD and the need to assist people in growing their own food. However, there had been interference in the plot allocation by the Provincial Administration (District Commissioner, Chief, etc.), which was part of the plot allocation committee. However, ways of streamlining were being explored. The farmers grew crops for three years, until the trees would close the canopy.

The participants went to another viewpoint along the Nairobi-Nakuru highway where they could see intensive farming practised in the farms in the Kiambu district where the size of household landholdings was quite small (1 ha on average). From the viewpoint, the group followed the Magumu-Thika road, through two indigenous forests (Kamae and Kieni) and a tea farm after the Kieni forest. The person in charge of the tea farm informed the participants on how tea was grown, managed, harvested and processed.

At the end of the day, the participants were impressed by this visit to Kenya's countryside representing a range of ecological zones.

By Kiunga Kareko, Forestry Department, Kenya

1 The full report is not reproduced here but may be requested to the authors or to M.A. Trossero, FAO, FOPW, Rome.
2 This is a 23-page report, produced under TCDC arrangements. The full report is not reproduced here but may be requested to the authors or to M.A. Trossero, FAO, FOPW, Rome.
3 Dr H.O. Kojwang could not attend the workshop. The paper was provided earlier under the TCDC Progoramme. The full report is not reproduced here but may be requested to the authors or to M.A. Trossero, FAO, FOPW, Rome.
4 Paper presented at the National Seminar on Strengthening Information Systems for Sustainable Forest Management in Uganda, Jinja, Uganda, 11-12 April 2000, by Kenneth L. Opiro, John Tumuhimbise, Patience Turyareeba. An abstract of the paper is given in Annex VI - Uganda.

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