Biofuel company likely to lose its licence in Nacala, Mozambique


The Mozambican authorities are considering stripping the company Aviam Ltd of its licence to plant the shrub jatropha in the district of Nacala-a-Velha, as the company is not respecting the agreed timetable for implementing the project. Aviams supposed lack of seriousness had been denounced to Nampula provincial governor by the people. Initially, Aviam had employed 158 local peasants, but subsequently that number has fallen to around 50.

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Basic Data
NameBiofuel company likely to lose its licence in Nacala, Mozambique
Accuracy of LocationHIGH local level
Source of Conflict
Type of Conflict (1st level)Biomass and Land Conflicts (Forests, Agriculture, Fisheries and Livestock Management)
Type of Conflict (2nd level)Agro-fuels and biomass energy plants
Specific Commodities
Project Details and Actors
Project DetailsAviam is a joint venture formed by Italian and Mozambican interests. It had pledged to invest 20 million US dollars in the jatropha plantation, which would then produce biofuels.

Project Area (in hectares)10000
Level of Investment (in USD)20000000
Type of PopulationRural
Start Date2008
Company Names or State EnterprisesAVIAM from Italy
The Conflict and the Mobilization
Intensity of Conflict (at highest level)LOW (some local organising)
When did the mobilization beginLATENT (no visible resistance)
Groups MobilizingInformal workers
Local government/political parties
Forms of MobilizationOfficial complaint letters and petitions
Environmental ImpactsVisible: Biodiversity loss (wildlife, agro-diversity), Loss of landscape/aesthetic degradation, Deforestation and loss of vegetation cover
Potential: Food insecurity (crop damage), Soil contamination, Soil erosion
Health ImpactsPotential: Exposure to unknown or uncertain complex risks (radiation, etc…), Malnutrition
Socio-economic ImpactsVisible: Lack of work security, labour absenteeism, firings, unemployment, Land dispossession, Loss of landscape/sense of place
Potential: Loss of livelihood, Loss of traditional knowledge/practices/cultures
Project StatusIn operation
Do you consider this as a success?No
Why? Explain briefly.Jatropha is a commodity that competes with food crops. The production of jatropha damages the soil, consumes water and thus damage the environment. In addition, biofuels are not a sustainable solution to the energy and climate crisis.
Sources and Materials

Aviam Webpage
[click to view]

The Zimbabwean
[click to view]

Meta Information
ContributorBoaventura Monjane
Last update07/04/2014