Biofuels and food crop production: A case study of Mpeketoni Division, Lamu District Kenya

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School of Engineering and Applied Sciences
The principal aim of the study was to assess the degree of bio fuels and its role in food crop production in Mpeketoni division in Lamu district, Coast Kenya. The study was conducted among large bio fuel scheme farmers, smallholder farmers and collaborative reserve farmers. Bio fuel was looked upon as a critical issue towards problems associated with food crop production such as high food prices, scarcity of food, land tenure conflicts between the inter cultural tribes and changes in food patterns among others which were included in the statement of the problem. The researcher had to base on the methodology which focused on the description of the methods and techniques that were used to gather information for effective analysis of that data. This Chapter as well covers the study area comprised of the geographical location of the study area in coast province, Kenya which was situated 459 kilometers south east (138°) of the approximate center of Kenya and 446 kilometers east (102°) of the capital Nairobi. Sampling design was derived using the Sloven’s formula in that 65 being the population, by using the Sloven’s formula the researcher arrived at 55 which were the targeted respondents, data collection instruments such as use of questionnaires, interviews as well as observation were used to obtain important information about population under study in order to obtain accurate and sufficient information. Reliability and validity of the instruments were considered for purposes of accessing the worthiness of the instruments to generate correct data; data processing involved organizing the correct and well answered questionnaires. Analysis was done by use of frequency tables, percentages and pie charts. Lastly but not least the research covered a descriptive study design in which both qualitative and quantitative methods were adopted. Data was analyzed, coded and presented using tables and pie charts followed by discussions of the research findings. For example, among the findings, the researcher assessed the driving factors which promoted the use of bio fuels and according to the findings; the researcher could tell that availability (40%) was the major driving factor to use of bio fuels. This was because the materials for bio fuel preparation could be locally found. Lastly the researcher presented the conclusions as well as the recommendations of the research study. The researcher’s conclusions were based in both negative and positive way concerning the concept of bio fuel production. For example, the researcher stated in the conclusion that in addition to bio fuel causing rising up of food prices, they could increase greenhouse emissions and contribute to water shortages which in turn impacted on food production. This was a negative contribution of bio fuel. The researcher once again stated the positive side of bio fuel, that they helped in energy diversification and more sustainable since energy is derived from renewable sources such as Jatropha, soy beans and corn among others and that they as well provided alternatives to energy. One of the recommendations was encouraging inter cropping of Jatropha to ensure protection of food security so as to yield a variety of food crops for human consumption hence food stability.
A research report submitted to the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the award of a degree of Bachelor of Science in Environmental Management of Kampala International University
Biofuels, Food crop production, Mpeketoni Division, Lamu district, Kenya