Agricultural intensification must be supported by reforestation and agroforestry. Hence, the overall objective of the Sustainable Energy Production through Woodlots and Agroforestry (SEW) project is to decrease land competition between energy production and agricultural production by increasing agricultural productivity and income. With funding from the Netherlands’ Ministry of Foreign Affairs’ Directorate-General for International Cooperation (DGIS), SEW began in January 2009 and is managed from the IFDC Burundi office. Project oversight is provided by the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in Rwanda.
Over the life of the project, more than 30 million tree seedlings will be planted. Reforestation will create favorable conditions for biodiversity conservation and a harmonized management of natural resources.
Specific objectives of SEW include:
- Increased production of fuel wood through micro-woodlots and profitable agroforestry systems
- Effective and operational fuel wood and charcoal value chains
- A favorable environment for the development of a profitable fuel wood sector
The resulting re-greening of parts of the Great Lakes Region of central Africa will create conditions that improve the chance for successful nature conservation and management.
Workshops for Fuel Wood Value Chain Members
Wood and charcoal continue to be the main sources of energy in the Great Lakes region, contributing to an increase in deforestation and a decrease in wood supplies. To address the ongoing energy crisis in the Albertine Rift, SEW organized participatory workshops in the region as part of its effort to strengthen the fuel wood value chain. The first two-day workshop took place October 28-29, 2009, in Bujumbura, Burundi. This was followed by another workshop November 17-19, 2009, in Butembo, Northern Kivu province, DRC. A third workshop took place in Bukavu, Southern Kivu province, DRC, December 15-17, 2009. Similar workshops were held in Rwanda in 2010.
Launch of Training Sessions for Charcoal Burners in Burundi
Charcoal producers were eager to learn about a new method of producing charcoal, one of the main sources of fuel in Burundi. The new method will help replace the inefficient methods currently being used in the country.
The new technology – improved carbonization kilns – has been recommended by SEW and will increase the amount of charcoal produced while using less wood in the process. This more efficient method means less waste and damage to the environment while boosting production and income potential for charcoal producers.
On November 24, 2009, about 30 charcoal producers participated in training sessions on how to use the improved carbonization kilns. The training took place in Rutovu commune, located in Bururi province of southern Burundi. This effort corresponds with SEW’s objectives of developing an effective, operational fuel wood value chain. The two-week training focused on providing support to charcoal producers by providing a thorough understanding of their role in the value chain and how to use the new technology.
Training sessions will take place in two other sites in Burundi and in the DRC.
SEW is implementing agroforestry activities through subcontractors – Twitezimbere Group, COPED and Help Channel in Burundi; and Multisector Investment Group and the Association for Integrated Rural Development (Duhamic Adri) in Rwanda. Vredeseilanden (VECO), an international NGO from Belgium, is working in South Kivu province. The World Wildlife Fund - Belgium is working in North Kivu province. Contracts were signed on December 11, 2009, in Bujumbura.
The aim is to plant 6,000 hectares (ha) of forest and agroforestry trees in Burundi, 6,000 in Rwanda, 3,000 in North Kivu and 3,000 in South Kivu during 2010 and 2011.
7,846 ha de Boisements Plantés au Burundi par IFDC (2009-2012): Grande Satisfaction des Bénéficiaires (July 12, 2012 - Burundi Ministry of Water, Environment, Land Use and Urban Planning)
SEW Project Participates in National Tree Day Events in
Conjunction with the UN’s International Year of Forests, 2011
IFDC Core Competency: Gender Equity is Key to Feeding the Hungry
CATALIST and SEW Projects Educate with New Video (Taken from IFDC Report Volume 36, No.1)
Sustainable Energy Production Through Woodlots and Agroforestry in the Albertine Rift (SEW) (Taken from IFDC Report Volume 35, No.2 in English and French)
MAKALA (Full Version)
MAKALA (Condensed Version)
Sustainable Energy - English Captions
Sustainable Energy - French Captions
IFDC Releases Film on Improved Charcoal Production in the
Albertine Rift of Central Africa
IFDC’s CATALIST/SEW Project Contributes to Rwanda’s National Tree Week - English and French Versions
CATALIST/SEW Newsletter - English and French Versions
CATALIST/SEW Brochure - English and French Versions