FROM SUGAR PRODUCTION TO SUSTAINABLE ENERGY PRODUCTION: EXPLORING SCENARIOS AND POLICY IMPLICATIONS FOR BIOENERGY IN THE SUGAR BOWL OF INDIADhanraj A. Patil
In the post climate change era energy conservation and alternative sustainable energy pathways like bioenergy have drawn global attention. Amongst the various sector sugar industry is considered as most promising sector for biofuel production from renewable resources. Indian sugar industry is the second largest producer of sugar in the world after Brazil. Electricity production through cogeneration in sugar mills in India is an important avenue for supplying low-cost, non-conventional power to mitigate sustainable energy challenges. This study aims to lend insight into the future scenarios of sustainable bioenergy through bagasse cogeneration by sugar factories, principally to assist sustainable energy policy making process in India. The study primarily relies on futures studies methodology particularly, mini Delphi, PESTEL, System Axis and Scenario construction. The study concludes four distinctive alternative scenarios and policy implications for bagasse based bioenergy production in the Indiaâs one of the largest sugar zones viz: Solapur district Maharashtra State. From policy point of view this study is a step forward to assist to prepare plan and course of action considering sustainability as a central relevance in bioenergy policy making.