Fuelwood supply and demand in Rwanda: The role of agroforestry systems

In Rwanda, there is a huge imbalance between the demand and supply of fuelwood. Growing trees has been one option to overcome the scarcity of fuelwood. While it has been estimated that all fuelwood comes from forests, and thereby causing deforestation, other sources of fuelwood are available and have not been considered in the estimation of the gap between the demand and supply of wood for fuel.

Growing multipurpose trees in the context of agroforestry has considerable merit through optimising the benefits from trees, crops and livestock. Fuelwood is a one of the products that can be harvested from agroforestry systems. However, the actual magnitude of the role of agroforestry systems in fuelwood supply has not been quantified.

Fuelwood from trees and woodlots on farms is used for household consumption or as informal sale. As a result, its size, importance, economic value, and extent of use by rural households have not been assessed. The present research aims at quantifying the role of trees and woodlots on farms in fuelwood supply by (i) estimating tree biomass at landscape level, (ii) by identifying factors that motivate farmers to plant trees, and (iii) by building scenarios for future fuelwood demand and supply based on conditions of tree planting rate, land availability and biomass production for fuelwood. 


  • Ndayambaje, J.D; Mohren, G.M.J.(2011) Fuelwood demand and supply in Rwanda and the role of agroforestry. Agroforsty Systems (online first) Doi: 10.1007/s10457-011-9391-6