Wood energy and forest landscape restoration are often considered contradictory, likewise, we hear that the traditional use of wood fuels causes forest degradation, or even that the conservation of forest habitats reduce access to forest. energy and livelihoods of rural households. However, there is another story to tell, sustainable wood energy can improve forest restoration while contributing to sustainable livelihoods. As “The International Center for Forest Research” (CIFOR) points out, wood fuel has “untapped potential” for renewable energy and climate change mitigation. This requires improving the wood energy value chain and its sustainability in order to reduce pressures on natural forests through best management practices and improved technologies.
There are many ways in which the potential of wood fuels can be harnessed, one of them is improving sustainability in the value chain, from the production and transformation of biomass, to the production and use of bioenergy and its by-products. Agroforestry, for example, is a method of reducing pressures on forests from biomass production for energy. A successful example of the deployment of this practice comes from an integrated food energy restoration concept, where trees of two different small-scale species are blended for the generation of electricity, biofertilizers, and forage. This can have positive impacts not only on the yield of food crops but also on farmers’ incomes, land restoration and carbon sequestration in the soil.
The “Global Bioenergy Association” (GBEP) collaborates to create and strengthen dialogue between stakeholders in the forest and wood energy sectors. This collaboration aims to improve knowledge and skills related to local sustainable production and use of wood energy, as well as rational planning of sustainable landscapes and rural development mainly in Africa.
Do you know examples like this in Mexico?