Understanding marginal changes in ecosystem services from biodiesel feedstock production: a study of Hassan Bio-Fuel Park, India

Evelien de Hoop

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)
66 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

Small-scale biodiesel production with a high level of community involvement has been associated with a number of benefits. These include relatively low environmental impacts, lack of competition with food production, strong poverty alleviation effects and enhanced access to energy. This Short Communication provides a qualitative analysis of the effects of the cultivation of biodiesel oilseed tree crops (mostly Millettia pinnata, along with Simarouba glauca, Azadirachta indica, Madhuca lungifolia and Jatropha curcas) in such a small-scale project, the Hassan Bio-Fuel Park in Karnataka, India. This extensive ethnographic research and using the ecosystem services approach to synthesize the findings suggests that the changes in both the flows of ecosystem services and different constituents of human wellbeing are marginal. While the ecosystem services approach can be useful to synthesize various forms of knowledge on biofuels to inform policy, this particular case study highlights the importance of being open about the different, often implicit, priorities and values of research projects and the various kinds of actors involved in biofuel production. Finally, it is crucial to understand not just which impacts are generated but especially how those impacts are generated.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)55-62
Number of pages8
JournalBiomass and Bioenergy
Volume114
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jul 2018

Keywords

  • Biodiesel
  • Ecosystem services
  • Ethnography
  • Hassan bio-fuel park
  • India
  • Millettia pinnata

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