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Dr. Patricia Guardabassi
Sustainability Science Program
Kennedy School of Government
79 JFK Street
Cambridge, MA 02138 USA
Office: 504 Rubenstein Building
Tel: (1) 617-495-1417
Group affiliation: Giorgio Ruffolo Post-doctoral Research Fellow in Sustainability Science
Patricia Guardabassi is a Giorgio Ruffolo Post-doctoral Research Fellow in the Sustainability Science Program. Her research investigates how the production of ethanol could be sustainably introduced in African countries drawing on the successful Brazilian experience in introducing sugarcane ethanol in its energy matrix. Over the past decade she has been associated with the Brazilian Reference Center on Biomass, developing studies related to biomass-based energy production. Patricia is contributing to collaborative work with the Initiative on Biofuels and Globalization led by Henry Lee. She is a chemical engineer (2001) and holds a PhD in Science (2011) and Master’s degree in Energy (2006) both from the University of São Paulo. Her dissertation analyzes the main barriers to the development of bioethanol industry in developing countries, especially those located in Latin America and Africa. She has published papers and chapters on the sustainability of biofuels production in Brazil. Her faculty host is Henry Lee.
The role of public policies to overcome the obstacles to the expansion of biofuel programs in African countries
In view of the impacts from the extensive use of fossil fuels and the opportunity to reduce their emissions through the adoption of renewable energy for power production and biofuels on the transportation sector, developed countries have established targets for use of clean fuels. However, many countries do not produce volumes of biofuels sufficient to supply the domestic market. Consequently, the international trade of biofuels has been growing and more producing countries are likely to be part of it. The regions with greater aptitude for the cultivation of rain-fed sugarcane are located in Latin America, the Caribbean, Africa and Asia, but these regions produce small amounts of ethanol due to the existence of barriers that must be overcome in order to allow the development of a biofuels production sector. The main objective of this research is to investigate how the production of ethanol could be sustainably introduced in African countries drawing on the successful Brazilian experience in introducing sugarcane ethanol in its energy matrix and considering the lessons learned over three decades of their biofuels program.