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Basiru Shehu

PhD Researcher,

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Biography

Research Topic: Spatial and Scale Optimization for Crops - Based Biofuel Production Facilities in Nigeria Using GIS and Remote Sensing Technologies.

Research Supervisors: Prof. Michele L. Clarke and Dr. Gary Priestnall

Funding Source: Petroleum Technology Development Fund (PTDF).

Research Interests: Geospatial Technologies, Biofuel, Environment, Multi-criteria Analysis.

Teaching Summary

Taught Mathematics in primary schools in Nigeria from 2000 to 2003.

Taught Geography in Secondary Schools in Nigeria from 2008 to 2010.

Served as Demonstrator for 2 modules at the University of Nottingham for the 2018/2019 academic sessions. These modules are Digital Explorers and Interpreting Geographical Data (IGD).

Research Summary

There is growing interest in Nigeria for biofuel production championed by the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) especially, of recent that the government has keen interest to diversify… read more

Current Research

There is growing interest in Nigeria for biofuel production championed by the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) especially, of recent that the government has keen interest to diversify the economy majorly through agricultural development. Nigeria has the potential to generate significant amounts of energy (fuel and power) from agricultural crops and their residues. The National Biofuel Programme plans to use several feedstock sources including Sugarcane, Cassava, Sweet sorghum, Oil palm and Jatropha and by 2020, 2% of the arable land will be required for the project. According to the Nigeria Biofuel Policy (2007), one of the responsibilities of the Ministry of Agriculture is to support land acquisition and utilisation strategies by biofuel companies. Whether searching for new expansion sites or maximizing crops productivity, optimising ecological requirements is crucial to the sustainability of crops production for the agricultural subsectors such as food, feed, fuel and fibre. The aim of this research is to use geospatial technologies to identify most suitable areas for the biofuel crops production. Based on these areas, locations and scales will be optimised for the crops-based biofuel production facilities (companies) in the Country.

The research adopts a two-stage methodology, multicriteria evaluation (MCE) for land suitability analysis and Supply Area Modelling (SAM) for site optimisation. Environmental assessment is usually complex due to trade-offs among the ecological, economic and socio-political factors which involves conflicting spatial and non-spatial criteria that play varying degrees of importance. GIS-based multicriteria decision analysis (GIS-MCDA) is one of the most common and favourable tools used to determine suitable sites for human activities (Jelokhani-Niaraki et al., 2018; Villacreses et al., 2017). This model also has shown to be a useful tool for sustainability assessment (Boggia et al., 2018). Location-allocation and Supply Area Modelling are usually the techniques used in optimising locations for biomass processing plants. The former is used where the objective is to aggregate all the usable biomass in a given area to a processing plant without transportation limit. While the later puts a threshold beyond which biomass cannot viably be transported to the processing plant due to transport cost (Shi et al., 2008). Research results are expected to provide guide to biofuel companies in Nigeria in their quest to make informed decision about where best (environmentally and economically) they can site their processing plant, whether it is expansion or new establishment.

Past Research

  • Undergraduate research project: The Impacts of Industrialisation on the Socio-economic Development of Sokoto City, 2007.
  • MSc Dissertation: Site Optimisation for Biofuel Production Facilities in Nigeria Using GIS and Remote Sensing Technologies, 2015.

Future Research

Having thought about the following themes:

  • Rainfall harvesting sites in Nigeria; Flooding is an annual phenomenon in Nigeria and usually comes with huge economic and social costs. Instead of allowing the annual peak overland flows to cause floods every year, providing large water/rainfall harvesting sites in the Country may provide some solution to the menace. Identification of these site could be achieved using the geospatial technologies in conjunction with Multicriteria Decision Analysis (MCDM).

School of Geography

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