Sustainable Fuelwood Plantation (SFP) for Solid Biofuel Production

Stacked logs of wood

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Sustainable Fuelwood Plantation (SFP) for Solid Biofuel Production
SectorMost major industry classification systems use sources of revenue as their basis for classifying companies into specific sectors, subsectors and industries. In order to group like companies based on their sustainability-related risks and opportunities, SASB created the Sustainable Industry Classification System® (SICS®) and the classification of sectors, subsectors and industries in the SDG Investor Platform is based on SICS.
Renewable Resources and Alternative Energy
Alternative Energy
Business Model Description

Invest in or project financing for Sustainable Fuelwood Plantation (SFP) with a range of plantation schemes (Fuelwood, Timber, Inter cropping with Plantations, Cash crops, Agro-forestry) and multiple fuelwood species (Gliricidia, Acacia, Calliandra, Eucalyptus, Falcataria, Casuarina, Leucaena.

Multi-stakeholder partnerships among government (Forest Department - FD, Rubber Research Institute of Sri Lanka - RRISL, Coconut Cultivation Board - CCB), Private sector plantation companies, Local communities and Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) with resource mobilization and cost/profit sharing.

There are 24 private sector-owned Regional Plantation Companies (RPC) in the country, having fuelwood plantations for own use. Further, Forest Department involves with pilot fuelwood plantations, and other innovative fuelwood plantation schemes involving communities, private sector and NGOs. Limited number of community/farmer-based fuelwood plantations are also available. Examples of Companies active in the IOA Space:

Talawakelle Tea Estates PLC was established in 1992 and has 17 tea estates, spread out over about 6,500 ha. Over 85% of energy requirement is supplied by biomass with annual consumption of over 10,000 metric tonnes or 166,000 GJ (Fuelwood 83% and Briquettes - 2%). On average 25% of fuelwood needed is grown within the estates. Nearly 950 ha is used for timber and fuelwood plantation (36).

Elpitiya Plantations PLC, established in 1997, has 13 estates in 8,800 hectares. Its core business includes the cultivation and manufacturing of Tea, Rubber, Oil Palm, Coconut and Cinnamon. About 87.5% of energy requirement is supplied by biomass, of which 23% of fuelwood needs are catered through in-house production. It expects to become self-sufficient in thermal energy generation, through its sustainable forestry by 2030 (8).

Watawala Plantations PLC was established in 1990 and it engages in the cultivation and harvesting of palm oil, tea, rubber, and other export crops in 19 estates and 12,440 ha. About 11% of the land is kept aside for the purpose of fuelwood plantations. Over 166 ha of bamboo and fuelwood plantations have been established for 25% of thermal energy demand (9).

Forest Department (FD) was established in 1899. About 55% of the forest lands fall under the purview of the FD. In one of its initiatives, FD has partnered with the Talawakelle Tea Estate PLC to establish fuelwood plantations with the participation of the community. After the final harvest, the community gets 50%, Company 30% and FD 20%. The entire thinning is shared amongst the community (10).

Expected Impact

SFPs to generate woody biomass for improved biofuel production as a source of indigenous, renewable, clean fuel to replace imported fossil fuels.

Indicative ReturnDescribes the rate of growth an investment is expected to generate within the IOA. The indicative return is identified for the IOA by establishing its Internal Rate of Return (IRR), Return of Investment (ROI) or Gross Profit Margin (GPM).
15% - 20% (in IRR)
Investment TimeframeDescribes the time period in which the IOA will pay-back the invested resources. The estimate is based on asset expected lifetime as the IOA will start generating accumulated positive cash-flows.
Medium Term (5–10 years)
Market SizeDescribes the value of potential addressable market of the IOA. The market size is identified for the IOA by establishing the value in USD, identifying the Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) or providing a numeric unit critical to the IOA.
< USD 50 million
Average Ticket Size (USD)Describes the USD amount for a typical investment required in the IOA.
< USD 500,000
Direct ImpactDescribes the primary SDG(s) the IOA addresses.
Affordable and Clean Energy (SDG 7) Life on Land (SDG 15)
Indirect ImpactDescribes the secondary SDG(s) the IOA addresses.
Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure (SDG 9) No Poverty (SDG 1) Climate Action (SDG 13)
Sector Sources
  • 1) Renewable Energy Resource Development Plan 2021-2026, "2) National Energy Policy and Strategies of Sri Lanka (August 2019), Ministry of Power, Energy and Business Development, Government of Sri Lanka. Web link: " 3) ADB (July 2016), Sri Lanka: Gender Equality Diagnostic of Selected Sectors, Asian Development Bank (ADB) "4) WEF (April 2021), Fostering Effective Energy Transition 2021 edition, Insight Report, World Economic Forum (WEF). " 5) SLSEA (2021), Sri Lanka Energy Balance (SLEB) 2019, Sri Lanka Sustainable Energy Authority (SLSEA), 6) A. Wickramasinghe (2009), Gender and Energy in Sri Lanka: A Brief Analysis of the Situation. 7) Department of Census and Statistics (November 2017), Economic Census 2013/14, Final Report on InformalNon Agricultural Activities,
IOA Sources
  • 8) Elpitiya Plantations PLC, Annual Report 2021/22, 9) Watawala Plantations PLC, Annual Report 2021/22, 10) UNDP (October 2018), Model Fuelwood Plantations for Sustainable Energy Supply and Livelihood Development, ISBN 978-955-1476-24-3, file:///C:/Users/HP/Downloads/UNDPLKA_Biomass-Phase-I-Fuelwood-Plantation.pdf 11) UNDP (2013), Promoting Sustainable Biomass Energy Production and Modern Bio-Energy Technologies. GEF Project Document, 12) Wijeratne, M.A., Jayasinghe, P., Samaraweera, S., Botheju, W.S. and Seevaratnam, D., Energy Security for Tea Industry in Sri Lanka: A Review Oo Present Status & Opportunities for Self Sufficiency, Tea Research Institute (TRI), 13) K.K.C.K. Pperera, P.G. Rathnasiri and A.G.T. Sugathapala (2003), Sustainable Biomass Production for Energy in Sri Lanka, Biomass and Bioenergy, Volume 25, Issue 5, November 2003, Pages 541-556 14) Practical Action Consulting (May 2010), Bioenergy in Sri Lanka: Resources, Applications and Initiatives, Working Paper, Prepared for Pisces, 15) Jasinghe, A. (2022), A low-carbon industrial sector will pay dividends for Sri Lanka’s economy and the planet, 16.06.2022 Press and information team of the Delegation to Sri Lanka & Maldives, Opinion editorial, 16) A. Ethirajan (January 2022), How the soaring cost of living is hitting Sri Lankans hard, BBC News, Colombo, 17) M. Jayasinghe, E.A. Selvanathan, and S. Selvanathan (September 2021), Energy Poverty in Sri Lanka, Energy Economics, Volume 101, 105450. 18) UNIDO, Industrial Decarbonization Accelerator, Sri Lanka, 19) National Environment Action Plan (NEAP) 2022-2030 (July 2022), Ministry Environment, Government of Sri Lanka, ISBN 978-624-5817-24-5, 20) GoSL (September 2021), Updated Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs), Government of Sri Lanka (GoSL), 21) FAO in Sri Lanka (August 2018), From Impoverished to Empowered. Sri Lankan Women Adopt Modern Biomass Technologies, 22) IEA (2007), Good Practice Guidelines, Bioenergy Project Development & Biomass Supply, International Energy Agency (IEA), 23) P.G. Joseph (January 2011), Market and Economic Study of the Biomass Energy Sector in Sri Lanka, United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO), "24) SDC (December, 2021), Sri Lanka: Status of SDG Indicators and Baseline Data, Sustainable Development Council of Sri Lanka (SDC), December 2021, " 25) Central Bank of Sri Lanka (August 2020), Economic & Social Statistics of Sri Lanka - 2020, 26) Amerasekera, R.M. (2014), Case Study - Sri Lanka "Anagi" Improved Cookstoves Commercialisation, 27) R. Mohideen (October, 2018), Energy Technology Innovation in South Asia -Implications for Gender Equality and Social Inclusion, ADB South Asia Working Paper Series No. 61, ISSN 2071-7202 (print), 2218-2675 (electronic), "28) GoSL (December 2017), Final Country Report of the Land Degradation Neutrality Target Setting Programme in Sri Lanka, Ministry of Mahaweli Development and Environment, The Government of Sri Lanka (GoSL)," 29) GoSL (2003), The National Climate Change Policy of Sri Lanka, Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources, The Government of Sri Lanka (GoSL), 30) National Forestry Policy 1995, 31) Sri Lanka Sustainable Energy Authority (SLSEA) Act No. 35 of 2007, 32) SLSI (2016), Sri Lanka Standard Specification for Principle, Criteria and Indicator for Sustainably Produced Fuelwood, SLS 1551: 2016, UDC 662.75, 33) Forest (Amendment) Act, No. 65 of 2009, 34) CBSL (May 2022), Sri Lanka Green Finance Taxonomy, Central Bank of Sri Lanka (CBSL), 35) Jayasinghe M (2016), Energy poverty in Sri Lanka -,largest%20contributor%20to%20energy%20poverty. 36) Talawakelle Tea Estates PLC, Integrated Annual Report 2020/21,