This was the position of the National Federation of Farmers’ Unions in 2012, but it has emerged again recently. In an article in its quarterly news bulletin, the CPF explains its stance in the following terms:

Pépinière de Jatropha près de Bono

  • As regards the current promotion of new cultivation techniques, (mixing subsistence crops and commercial crops); ;

  • - In view of the scarce profits generated by such cultivation in the climate conditions of Burkina;

  • - In view of the fact that countries with more favourable climates (Brazil, Madagascar) have abandoned Jatropha cultivation after unsuccessful results;

  • Considering that replacing fossil energy with biofuel would in the long run be taking up good farmland in Burkina ( a study by the Ministry of Agriculture shows that 869 000 to 5 million hectares of Jatropha would be needed to cover the present demand for fossil energy in the country);

  • As no one has yet been able to prove that Jatropha has a real potential in forestry or wildlife;

  • Considering that Jatropha cultivation would be competing with other land for food security, since it is grown on fertile and not on arid soil;

  • As there are very few research findings on the comparative advantage of large scale Jatropha cultivation;

  • In view of the fact that there are other sources of clean energy, which are not in competition with subsistence crops;

  • Considering the risk that the export of biofuel could in the long term outdo local consumption (indeed at present developed countries tend to gradually convert to renewable energy, primarily biofuel) : ;

  • true to its vision, reiterating its attachment to the defence of family farming and eager to promote food sovereignty in Burkina -

The CPF is therefore - in the present circumstances, opposed to the development of Jatropha production and other biofuels in Burkina and therefore:

  • demands the ministries of scientific research and higher education to commission in depth studies on the toxicity and contamination effects of Jatropha;

  • invites the Government of Burkina to halt the promotion of Jatropha and and other biofuels in its agricultural and energy policy;

  • recommendsthe Ministry of Energy to redirect its efforts towards solar and wind energy, instead of Jatropha and other biofuels;

  • suggests authat producers who have already started growing Jatropha to preferably use it for hedges in stead of in mixed crops or as a single crop per se;

  • points out to the decision makers the health hazards of using some units for the production of cooking oil;

  • encourages the Ministry of Agricultural Research to study the technical, economic and social benefits of Jatropha;

  • requests transparency of Jatropha promoters in their information about the plant:.

    The National Federation of Farmers’ Unions (La Confédération Paysanne du Faso, CPF)

Since October 2007 the SEDELAN has warned the farmers about the Jatropha.
: Our first newsletter on this topic was under the headline

« ” Biofuel – an opportunity or a threat to Burkinabe farmers?” »

Since then we have said to the farmers: « “Do not fall into the trap” and subsequently we published several newsletters which are still

323) The Jatropha has much in common with a dairy cow”

381)“Jatropha and food sovereignty”

433) “Biofuel – the Jatropha and its perverse effects”

444) “The Jatropha and the anger of farmers.”

Koudougou, March 7th, 2014
Maurice Oudet
Director, SEDELAN

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