Biomass Briquettes: the Renewable Energy for the Tribals


Courtesy of Jay Khodiyar Machine Tools

The tribals are actual owners of the land but post independence era and due to faulty land reforms they have lost a significant amount of land and the customary right to live in their own area. The renewable energy policy in India can give them a new leash of life.

For years the tribals in India have dependent on the Nature for their living. It is well known fact that forest and natural surrounding play a major role in the lives of such people.  But today they have been forced to move out of their natural habitat and look for alternative means of livelihood and they can be taught to be self sufficient through briquetting of biomass.

How Tribals can Benefit through This?

The nurturing of tribal livelihood and rural development interventions in India have been curtailed due to rising industrialization. The situation is worst in the Eastern part of India where majority of tribals reside especially in Orissa. They have been deprived of their natural means of livelihood. Recently, the state also witnessed the resistance from the tribals due to encroachment of land by corporate houses.

In 2000, the Govt. of India initiated policies for the development of renewable sources of energy. The 80’s was the year for developing, dissemination and demonstration of renewable source of energy. The programme was run on government subsidies but in 1993 there was urgent need to provide the required attention for market orientation and commercialization. Then in order to have further involvement of private sector the emphasis shifted towards planning, policies and institutional linkages to promote renewable source of energy which can be obtained through wood powder making machine.

Briquetting of Biomass Resolves Energy Crisis

Amidst all these, one of the simplest ways to generate an alternate source of fuel was possible by encouraging briquetting machine manufactures to fulfill the requirement of energy in village and industries. Over a decade when the tribals of India started making biomass briquettes they were trying to solve an immediate energy issue at their homes. Today this is helping some of the huge industries by resolving their energy crisis.

Other Advantages

On the other hand, briquetting of biomass is also helping to solve some of the most intractable headaches like poverty, unemployment and poor waste management. This is contributing towards the sustainability and development of a nation.

Today the sustainable source of wood fuel is fast diminishing due to deforestation. There are many poor families that suffer from energy crisis. In fact deforestation has become a worldwide epidemic due to weak management policies, rising population, poverty and other social evils. Therefore the success of biomass briquetting depends on the benefits of the community.

Briquettes have served as a substitute to coal and charcoal. Today they are being used in most developing countries where there is shortage of cooking fuel. Such renewable source of energy can be used to heat industrial boilers and to produce electricity from steam. The use of bio-fuel has been encouraged because they leave less carbon footprint on Earth.

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