Academic journal article Global Economic Observer

The Assessment of the Energy Potential of Biomass of Animal and Plant Origin in the Context of Local Development: The Case of Turkey *

Academic journal article Global Economic Observer

The Assessment of the Energy Potential of Biomass of Animal and Plant Origin in the Context of Local Development: The Case of Turkey *

Article excerpt

1. Introduction

Renewable energy and biomass energy, a type of renewable energy, are one of the issues that have been overemphasized since the 1990s. The fact that the countries of the world turned to renewable energy sources from fossil fuels and diversified their energy sources, the increasing importance of renewable energies in the energy security context, the lack of stability in energy prices, the fact that the countries adopted growth strategies based on local dynamics, the source of which they had in their lands, reducing transportation costs, alternatives to generate electricity were among the factors that brought this issue to the agenda of the world and made the scientists conduct studies on the issue (IEA, 2015). Biomass energy that is one of the renewable energy sources is an important energy source particularly for developing countries, and the production and use of it are increasing every day.

As a county that has biomass energy sources and production potential, Turkey is a country that can use biomass energy potential for growth and development objectives. Turkey is a country dependent on energy. On one hand, industrialization and urbanization continuously increased energy needs; on the other hand, available energy resources became unable to respond to this need because of the price volatility and the fact that they are stock assets. Moreover, the reasons such as the facts that commonly used fossil fuels lead to environmental disasters, that they are not distributed equally geographically and cause foreign trade deficits led the countries to turn to renewable energy sources. Because of the reasons that the countries having fossil fuel energy started to consider their energy assets as a strategic element during and after 1973 energy crisis, biomass energy sources came into question because of their characteristics that they continue their presence within a continuous loop and do not cause environmental pollution, and contribute to the development of countries using their own resources. Ecological economists argued that depleted fossil energy sources could limit the countries' growth and development momentum after the 1980s. This situation can be overcome by renewable energy sources such as biomass energy source that is inexhaustible until the existence of a new energy technology, and the growth and development's sustainability depends on this (Bayramoglu, 2014).

Biomass energy is a type of renewable energy that is obtained from biomass such as agricultural, animal, forestry, municipal and industrial waste by chemical and biological methods (Yaprakli & Bayramoglu, 2014, pp. 319-336). Biomass energy can be obtained anywhere and anytime if the necessary investments and production infrastructure are made. From this perspective, it will make a major contribution to national and local economic development of the countries, including Turkey, which are poor in fossil fuels and have to allocate huge resources for energy. These effects can be evaluated under three main headings: economic, environmental and socio-demographic. All countries of the world need energy sources such as biomass energy that is environmentally friendly and the source of which is in their own land in order to reduce income differences between regions. It can be said that the countries and regions having these types of energy develop faster than the others.

2. The Relationship Between Biomass Energy and Local Economic Development

The effects of biomass energy on local economic development can be evaluated under three main headings: economic, environmental and socio-demographic (Duygu & Cisdik, 2008). Among these, economic effects drew attention particularly in the period after 1973 energy crisis. These effects can be mentioned as the instability of the energy markets, the effects caused by the inefficient use of energy, energy saving, the contribution of the production and use of renewable energy to technology and employment. …

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