Remote Sensing and GIS Techniques for the Assessment of Biofuel and Biomass Energy Resources

  • Lalit KumarEmail author
  • Anirudh Singh
Conference paper
Part of the Climate Change Management book series (CCM)


The Pacific Island Countries (PICs) are faced with energy challenges arising from the lack of availability of fossil fuel sources in the region. Renewable energy has been identified as a primary means by which these challenges could be met. The successful utilization of renewable energy resources of the region will, however, depend on several factors. Among these are the availability of the relevant resources, and the political and legal framework, human capacity, and institutional mechanisms required to develop and implement renewable energy projects. Biomass and biofuels are two important resources available to many of the PICs. However, before these forms of renewable energy can be used, a necessary first step is the assessment of the availability of these resources, and the land area required to produce them. Remote sensing and GIS are two important techniques that can be employed for this purpose. In the technique of remote sensing, satellite imagery is used to quantitatively assess the biomass cover and available land area over large areas of a country. The information thus collected is conveniently stored in GIS systems which can be used for decision-making. This paper begins by showing why there is a need for a quantitative assessment of the biomass and biofuel resource potentials of the region before decisions about the use of such resources can be made. The techniques of remote sensing and GIS are then introduced, and examples of their potential application in the assessment of biomass and biofuel resources provided. The need for a biofuel resource assessment for Fiji is then considered in detail. Finally, recommendations are made for a biomass and biofuel assessment strategy for the Pacific region.


Remote sensing GIS Pacific island countries (PICs) Resource assessment Biofuel resources Biomass resources 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Environmental and Rural ScienceUniversity of New EnglandArmidaleAustralia
  2. 2.University of the South PacificSuvaFiji

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