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close this bookBoiling Point No. 33 - May 1994 Number 33 (ITDG - ITDG, 1994, 36 p.)
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Asian Regional Wood Energy Development Programme - An uncertain future?

by Clare Heyting, Production Manager, Boiling Point, IT-UK Energy Unit, Myson House, Railway Terrace, Rugby, CV21 3HT.

The last edition of Wood Energy News (Volume 6, Number 2, November 1993) reported an uncertain future for the activities of the Regional Wood Energy Development Programme (RWEDP). At the time the journal went to press, it was stated that 'the Government of the Netherlands has informed FAO that a decision on funding the proposed follow-up project has been postponed pending an overall review of priorities for development co-operation in relation to available financial resources'.

RWEDP was launched by the Food and Agricultural Organization of the United Nations in 1985, during a period in which there was increasing concern over energy issues, especially after the 1981 Nairobi conference on New and Renewable Sources of Energy, and an FAO/ESCAP (Economic and Social Commisssion for Asia and the Pacific) workshop in 1983. The Netherlands' Government assisted and various countries of the region participated in the programme.

The aims of the project were to give assistance and training in the technical and socio-economic aspects of wood energy production and utilization systems. To this end Wood Energy News was established as a priority activity, the first issue appearing in January 1986. The other activities of RWEDP were summarized as follows:

1. Training and exchange of personnel, particularly with regard to the introduction or adaptation of wood energy matters in forestry oriented curricula, the training of trainers, and the strengthening of capabilities in the planning of wood energy strategies.

2. Information and extension, with emphasis on the exchange of information on research and development programmes and results, dissemination of information relevant to farmers and field staff, and on the development of appropriate communication and extension techniques and materials.

3. Research, development and demonstration, with emphasis on access to improved genetic material and on conversion technologies.

4. Technical assistance, with emphasis on the formulation of wood energy policies and strategies, monitoring and evaluation of wood energy programmes, and the design or adaptation of suitable training programmes.

(Wood Energy News, Volume 1, Number 1, January 1986)